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Research: Federal Cloud Computing Survey

Government: Server Virtualization

Research: Federal Cloud Computing Survey

InformationWeek Government’s 2013 Federal Government Cloud Computing Survey finds that a sizable majority of ­respondents have work under way or plans to advance their agencies’ cloud strategies. More than half of these ­agencies have identified use cases for cloud services, and 46% have evaluated cloud products and services.

Commercial cloud services are the most widely used in federal government, cited by 18% of respondents using or ­assessing cloud services. Private clouds operating inside government data centers are next, used by 14%. In both cases, those results are a few percentage points higher than in 2011.
Infrastructure-as-a-service is the most-used type of cloud service among survey respondents, at 49%. That’s followed by storage-as-a-service (32%), software-as-a-service (25%) and platforms-as-a-service (19%).

Lowering the cost of ongoing IT operations was the most-cited business driver, mentioned by 54%, followed by ­reducing capital investment in servers and data center equipment (51%). These two data points underscore a strong motivation to lower IT costs, reflecting the budget pressures federal agencies are under. More than half of respondents using or assessing cloud services have compared the costs of cloud services to existing systems and found some level of savings.

The top challenges identified by those respondents using or assessing cloud services are security (68%), compatibility with legacy systems and processes (51%), and lack of expertise and experience (31%).

Government organizations will continue to increase their use of cloud computing, for applications that are more ­sophisticated than email-as-a-service. Adoption will be fueled by intense budget pressures and data center ­consolidation. Private and community clouds will spring up, and there will be an increase in use of public clouds ­designed specifically for government needs. (R5671012)

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