Cloud could squeeze even more savings, says survey

Federal agencies have saved an average of $5.5 billion yearly by implementing cloud computing, a modest number next to the $12 billion in potential savings estimated by new research.

The MeriTalk report “Cloudy with a Chance of Savings” found that government CIOs and IT managers had saved 7 percent of their annual IT budget by going cloud. That number represents $5.5 billion in savings based on the FY2013 IT budget of $78.9 billion.

But according to input by federal IT executives, agencies could have saved even more. Estimates from MeriTalk indicated agencies could have slashed 15 percent of their IT budgets for the last three years with cloud, which could amount to nearly $12 billion per year.

Despite the promise of big savings, agencies are still cautious about migrating to the cloud and using cloud-based services. Eighty-five percent said security remains the largest obstacle to cloud implementation, while 38 percent cited the culture aspect as a roadblock. Nearly one-third said service levels are the most pressing challenges to cloud adoption.. 

Asked where the most resistance to cloud comes from, respondents pointed to IT leadership (20 percent), program management (18 percent) and legal (17 percent).

Defense Department and civilian respondents had opposing views on the direction of the FY2016 IT budget as well as cloud applications. DOD respondents believe the FY2016 IT budget will decline to $72.4 billion, while civilians think the budget will grow to $80.1 billion.

Seventy percent of all respondents expect an increase of cloud-based applications within the next couple of years. However, they ranked data center consolidation as a biggest driver for savings in the federal government. Cloud placed second, followed by big data and the “bring your own device” – BYOD -- concept. 

The findings of the survey, which polled 108 federal CIOs and IT managers, were presented April 25 at MeriTalk’s Cloud Computing Brainstorm event on Capitol Hill. 

About the Author

Camille Tuutti is a former FCW staff writer who covered federal oversight and the workforce.

The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • computer network

    How Einstein changes the way government does business

    The Department of Commerce is revising its confidentiality agreement for statistical data survey respondents to reflect the fact that the Department of Homeland Security could see some of that data if it is captured by the Einstein system.

  • Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Army photo by Monica King. Jan. 26, 2017.

    Mattis mulls consolidation in IT, cyber

    In a Feb. 17 memo, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told senior leadership to establish teams to look for duplication across the armed services in business operations, including in IT and cybersecurity.

  • Image from Shutterstock.com

    DHS vague on rules for election aid, say states

    State election officials had more questions than answers after a Department of Homeland Security presentation on the designation of election systems as critical U.S. infrastructure.

  • Org Chart Stock Art - Shutterstock

    How the hiring freeze targets millennials

    The government desperately needs younger talent to replace an aging workforce, and experts say that a freeze on hiring doesn't help.

  • Shutterstock image: healthcare digital interface.

    VA moves ahead with homegrown scheduling IT

    The Department of Veterans Affairs will test an internally developed scheduling module at primary care sites nationwide to see if it's ready to service the entire agency.

  • Shutterstock images (honglouwawa & 0beron): Bitcoin image overlay replaced with a dollar sign on a hardware circuit.

    MGT Act poised for a comeback

    After missing in the last Congress, drafters of a bill to encourage cloud adoption are looking for a new plan.

Reader comments

Tue, May 1, 2012

Good point. We could probably save money if we could get agencies to share resources among themselves. We would also have confidence in the IT security level of those agency "clouds."

Mon, Apr 30, 2012

I wonder what results they'd get if they interviewed system administrators, etc instead of CIOs!

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group