Key to Govt Cloud Success

As the dust settles down and the G Cloud emerges, a key success factor which is potentially emerging everywhere is for the Cloud solution to be fully integrated than individual parts. Smart Govts are deciding along the same course. This has been borne out of the recent article in Forbes as well.

One Washington, D.C.-based privately-held company, IQ Business Group (IQBG), has led the way in bringing one of the largest federal agencies, the Department of the Interior (DOI), into the 21st century.

Last year the company scored a $53 million contract with the DOI, the federal agency that is responsible for federal land and natural resource conservation. The eight-year contract for IQBG’s software as a service (SaaS) platform is part of DOI’s IT Transformation initiative, which is expected to save $100 million annually. Known as the eMail,Enterprise Records, and Document ManagementSystem (eERDMS), the platform captures and auto-classifies (stores in folders according to subject) 100% of a staggering 75 million e-mails per month.  One impressive feat: it took only 45 days for IQBG to get eERDMS up and running for the DOI, which has nearly 100,000 employees nationwide.  This compressed time to going live illustrates the advantage of software based solutions: cost savings.

Michael Beck, IQBG’s CEO, notes that his company’s contract with the DOI is among the largest information technology initiatives in the federal government.  “We’re the first to provide a comprehensive solution for  e-mail archiving and journaling for an entire cabinet level agency,” he says, “and our competitors [which include companies such as IBM] do not have a fully-integrated product in production like ours that includes auto classification, record keeping and eDiscovery support.”

The DOI contract has helped IQBG expand its public sector practice, which includes state, local and higher education clients, from 30% of revenues to 65% of revenues.  And the company’s SaaS offering has led to impressive growth — Beck says IQBG’s total revenues have grown “in excess” of 100% over the past few years, and total information captured and processed by the company has grown from 10-15 terabytes in 2012 to an estimated 75 terabytes ( equates a single terabyte as equivalent to about 143 million pages of stored Microsoft MSFT +0.39% Word documents).


Cloud Vs System Integrators…the UK Story

Its tough to pick out Cloud success stories in the government, given the privacy concerns of recent past. But the G-Cloud seems to have a way of bubbling up to the surface. Below is an excerpt from such a case study.

Faced with a £52m bill from a large IT vendor for hosting “a major programme” the UK government decided to turn to commodity cloud services.

The result? It picked up a comparable service from a smaller player for £942,000.

Commodity cloud services are delivering savings that put prices charged by large systems integrators to shame, according to the UK’s tech chief.

Spend on G-Cloud services is growing rapidly, passing £25m in May, but is still tiny compared to an estimated annual public sector IT spend of £16bn. However this could pick up even more sharply as long-term contracts with large systems integrators expire.

“The majority of the large contracts finish by 2014-15, so there’s an enormous amount of change underway at the moment,” said Maxwell.

Maxwell has plenty of government IT horror stories of his own, telling the conference it historically cost government £723 to process each payment claim made by farmers to the Rural Payments Agency.

“It would be cheaper to rent a taxi put the cash in the taxi, drive the taxi to the farm and keep a manual record than it would have been the way the outsource contract worked,” he said.

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