Federal agencies are charged with "Cloud First," but are they moving mission-critical applications? MeriTalk's new 2012 "Mission-Critical Cloud: Ready for the Heavy Lift?" report reveals how Federal IT managers view the barriers, current status, and future plans related to moving mission-critical applications to the cloud. The study shares the perspectives of 151 Federal IT executives to investigate these questions and the path forward in this transformational shift.
On April 25, 2012, MeriTalk Cloud Computing Exchange (CCX) announced findings from a new study, "Cloudy with a Chance of Savings." The study, which identifies where the Federal government stands on cloud today and what the future holds for cloud adoption, reveals that Federal agencies are saving approximately $5.5 billion with cloud implementations today. This number pales next to the $12 billion annual savings estimates from the Cloud Computing Exchange Calculator, based on budget data input by Feds from real IT programs.
The Federal move to the cloud is on. As of December 9, 2010, OMB requires all agencies to adopt a "Cloud First" policy. Feds must choose a cloud-based solution first if one exists before initiating any new IT program – and must immediately begin transitioning existing applications to the cloud. Further, in February 2011, OMB provided additional direction to accelerate the safe and secure adoption of cloud computing. How many agencies have actually taken this step? How quickly are they progressing?
On April 12, 2011, Senator Carper (D-Del.), chair of the Senate Federal Financial Management, Government Information, Federal Services, and International Security Subcommittee, held a hearing on Vivek Kundra's 25 Point Implementation Plan to Reform Federal Information Technology Management. MeriTalk testified and provided the Federal IT community's perspective on the plan's desirability and executability to Senator Carper and the Subcommittee.
While cloud computing is the white hot technology topic today, neither the private nor the public sector truly understands what cloud computing means. What exactly is cloud computing, and what are the real benefits for Federal agencies? Could this be the Federal government's chance to take the lead on adoption of new technologies? Is the cloud really the panacea for Federal IT budget woes?