“Eat My Dust” State CIOs Rev Up their Cloud Engines

State CIOs can no longer afford to stay in the infrastructure business and are now aggressively pursuing cloud-based services. That was the resounding message from state CIOs at the NASCIO Mid-Year Conference in April.

The need to cut IT costs, modernize, and speed deployment of new applications and services isn’t just moving states to think about cloud, these drivers have literally kick started formerly passive states into rapid action. According to Government Technology, some states plan to run 50-100 percent of their data center infrastructure in the cloud over the next few years.

In Kentucky, a formerly slow adopter of cloud, CIO Jim Fowler is in a hurry.

There are probably some things that will always have to be on premise but in the next five to seven years, I suspect that 80+ percent of our infrastructure and in the cloud somewhere. We’ll always keep the architectural and design talent in-house but ….as the technologies become more complex the talent to maintain it gets beyond public sector salaries so we need a partner to help us with that.”

State’s Vary in their Deployments

While some states are shifting their infrastructure to the cloud (Kentucky has an RFP out for cloud-based storage) others are moving mission-critical apps. Alabama’s cloud-first policy is under-way with a cloud-based CRM as a front-end for a new health and human services eligibility system, reports Government Technology. While in North Carolina, 70,000 employees are being moved to Office 365 cloud-based email. The Tar Heel state is also using the cloud to scale up computing capacity in order to handle spikes driven by tax season or elections.

Government data centers are no means a thing of the past. In Ohio, the state has consolidated its data centers into a single State of Ohio Computing Center where a private cloud helps cut infrastructure costs and speeds service delivery.

Learn More

To learn more about these initiatives from the CIOs themselves, as well as the challenges they’ve encountered along the way, check out these video interviews from the NASCIO conference, care of Government Technology.