Money is the number one driver of questions from Federal agencies about technology, according to Brian Roach of Juniper Systems.
“I’m getting a tremendous amount of inquiry just around pure economics,” Brian told me today when I asked him what agencies are asking him as they strategize IT procurements. “Our customers really are being asked to do more with less. Look at the Defense Department now. Their budgets are going elsewhere,” he said, alluding to Secretary Robert Gates’s recent proclamation of priorities being rearranged at the Pentagon.
“You see acquisitions that are driven by cost savings,” Brian says. “I will tell you, the industry is driving toward architectural change. We’re at a point where we’re starting to see the investment in the infrastructure somewhat outstripping the ROI. Where we’re getting into conversations is about innovation. We’re approaching a flatting of the architecture – a flattening of the data center architecture – just greater efficiencies across the board.”
Brian and I discussed the technological innovations that are driving change in government IT: virtualization, cloud computing, cybersecurity, and others. We also talked about the differences in applying strategies between the military and civilian organizations of the government.
Francis Rose is the host of In Depth, which airs weekdays from 8-10 a.m. on 1500 AM in the Washington, D.C. metro area and online everywhere. Francis has covered all three branches of the federal government as a broadcast journalist since 1998. He joined Federal News Radio in 2006, and launched In Depth in 2008 as a daily show focused on connecting federal executives to the information they need to do their jobs better.