White House, citing waste, freezes IT projects

But industry group says IT freeze will increase costs, not lower them

By , Computerworld |  Government, IT spending, obama

Federal CIO Vivek Kundra, who will be conducting a review of the financial systems, has long been a critic of the federal IT procurement process, and is openly envious of the private sector's ability to share common platforms across enterprises and to deploy new systems quickly -- whereas the federal government tends to hire contractors who remain "on the payroll indefinitely."

Instead, Kundra has outlined a strategy that has agencies sharing IT resources and cooperating on development. He also said cloud-type environments are an ideal platform for many federal services.

Kundra, for instance, was critical earlier this year of the internal IT operations at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Shortly after he wrote of his concerns in a blog post, the USPTO responded in its own blog post that it would redesign its system and move to a cloud platform .

Some of the financial system projects affected by this action have been on federal watch lists for delays and cost overruns for years, but other IT initiatives could get hit by a similar freeze, such as human resources projects.

"My question is, where will the administration stop? Will they get their fill with the financial systems, or will they keep marching through?" said John Slye, an analyst at Input.

Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov , or subscribe to Patrick's RSS feed . His e-mail address is pthibodeau@computerworld.com .

Read more about it in government in Computerworld's IT in Government Topic Center.


Originally published on Computerworld |  Click here to read the original story.
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