MeriTalk Cloud Computing Exchange (CCX), a consortium of U.S. government IT leaders and personnel, released a report titled “Cloudy with a Chance of Savings,” which claims federal agencies are saving $5.5 billion in IT costs with current cloud computing efforts, and could save as much as $12 billion annually.
MeriTalk announced the findings of the report, which polled 108 government CIO’s and IT managers, at its inaugural Cloud Computing Brainstorm, co-hosted by Sen. Tom Carper, (D-Del). The program brought together federal and state CIOs with industry leaders to consult on cloud computing best practices, Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) progress and ways to move the government into the cloud.
“At a time when we’re facing record budget deficits, it’s clear that the federal government needs to do a better job of protecting our scarce taxpayer dollars and curbing wasteful spending on assets it doesn’t need,” Carper said in a prepared statement. "There’s probably no better example of this financial mismanagement than the $80 billion we spend each year on IT. The Obama Administration has made remarkable progress in its efforts to reduce unnecessary IT spending, but we still have more work to do. That’s why it’s so important that we keep up this momentum and push forward on the Federal government’s cloud computing initiative. By consolidating Federal data centers and moving the government to lighter, cheaper technologies, such as the cloud, we can provide better results for less money to the American people.”
The report findings show the federal government is currently spending $8.7 billion on cloud computing per year, and predicts a federal IT budget by 2016 of $78 billion. Compared to the current $80 billion level, this is perhaps not the big decrease many of us would hope for.
Some of the concerns indicated by government respondent include security (85 percent), organizational culture (38 percent), and service levels (32 percent). Respondents also noted opposition to cloud adoption from department leaders, including IT managers (20 percent), program managers (18 percent) and legal counsel (17 percent).
MeriTalk is an online community and resource for government IT personnel, and connects with more than 85,000 government contacts, including the private sector. In addition to Cloud Computing Exchange, MeriTalk also hosts Data Center Exchange and Cyber Security Exchange.