July 14, 2011, 2:18 PM — U.S. government agencies are breaking tradition to be among the first to adopt something new and exciting from the world of technology.
Large bureaucracies tasked with delivering services across the breadth of a large country, without the margin for error or ability to decide not to deliver the service after all – as commercial companies can do – don't leap at unproven processes or technology.
That's exactly what they're doing, though, including the chance they'll fall flat on their faces while continuing the 25-point "cloud-first" total-government migration plan created under the leadership of U.S. CIO Vivek Kundra, who is quitting that job for the second time.
Kundra introduced the plan in 2009, in conjunction with the Obama White House, and put it place in December as part of an overall "e-government" cost-saving efficiency raising effort that included regular progress reports to the public and struggles with budget cuts and other bureaucratic potholes.
Kundra, the former CIO of the District of Columbia was appointed to the post of U.S. CIO months after the Obama adminstration took office.
Among his highest-profile, highest-impact goals was to consolidate more than 2,100 data centers to 800 by 2015.
The other was to modernize and consolidate federal IT data centers using cloud technology to continue increasing their efficiency and cutting their costs.
Federal CIOs and analysts credit Kundra with energetic leadership and significant progress in an area that has seen little of either ever in its history.
Through debate and tooth gnashing at the closure of so many facilities, and objections to the adoption of technology that hasn't been proven in the private sector, Kundra kept the discussions, if not the project itself, on track.
He announced in June he would resign to take a fellowship at Harvard's Kennedy School of Government.
A third of the 25 milestones in the plan should have been accomplished by now, progress hasn't been nearly that fast, according to Computerworld.
U.S. CIO Vivek Kundra, resigned.