Government IT professionals have a Big Data problem. More and more data needs to be processed and stored each year, bringing immense pressure to increase processing speeds. Recently unstructured data has become a larger percentage of the total, making it increasingly impossible to accurately predict capacity requirements.

At the same time the technical challenge has mushroomed, the resources dedicated to government IT have leveled off or declined. So agency professionals are attempting to handle a tsunami of data in a very resources constrained environment.

Fortunately there are technical and financial resources today that were not available just a few years ago. Cloud-based processing and storage can be purchased on an operating or OPEX basis, as opposed to using CAPEX funds. This funding approach is much better suited for the data uncertainty facing agencies today, making IT spending more predictable and saving funding for frequent technology refreshes.

It used to be that the only option for agencies was the exponential number physical servers and racks. As data and access to that data increased, they needed to faster and faster bandwidth. Before any part of the IT mission could be accomplished, agencies had to incur hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars of capital expense, not to mention the inability to effectively manage this infrastructure due to limited staffing levels.

Thankfully all that is in the past, and increasingly agency CAPEX spending for IT is as well.  There are three main ways that agencies can move to an OPEX, “pay for what’s needed” approach to IT resources:

  • Leasing
  • Cloud Management
  • Partnering with OEM vendors

The OPEX model will eventually power an even more comprehensive Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) approach to IT provisioning. Cloud service have the ability to offer an a la carte menu of compute, networking and storage functionality to agencies as a pure service replacing, augmenting or tying into existing secure Private Cloud environments, greatly aiding federal customers to make the best IT and financial budgetary decisions.

When making the transition from CAPEX to OPEX, it’s vital to have the right IT partner. Make sure the company advising your agency has the right technology, a proven track record and the business process expertise required.

Specifically, review whether your partner company can provide the following:

  • Vendor neutral cloud assessments that match business requirements to the correct cloud offering(s).
  • Investment protection through flexible and portable cloud solutions that leverage open source, standards based private, public, and hybrid solutions.
  • A full portfolio of managed and hosted cloud service models that include FedRAMP compliant and FedRAMP ready IaaS, PaaS, SaaS cloud service provider offerings.
  • Expertise in FISMA and FedRAMP requirements, and the know-how to optimize inherited and shared controls to provide a cost effective and secure cloud solution.

True innovation takes the complexity out of federal IT services. And out of how best to pay for them.