Over the last decade, the desire to embrace the perks of cloud computing has permeated every industry, and the public sector is no different. State and local governments have been under pressure to modernize, and cloud computing technology solves many issues such as tightening budgets and limited internal resources. But given that some data and processes are sensitive in nature, there has been hesitation in making the actual migration with security breach threats to personal/private data. Now that the technology has advanced with an increased focus on vulnerability migration, agencies at all levels of the government are seeing benefits of the cloud. Let’s take a look at some of the biggest benefits.
One of the major drivers for the public sector to adopt the cloud is the need to reduce costs. Many local and state governments are already working with strained budget allocations and limited resources at their disposable. So, how can they reduce cost and enhance their services for employees and citizens? The cloud provides a cost-effective way to update infrastructure, servers, and systems without reinvesting in on-site hardware, thus leaving agencies the opportunity to redistribute funds to more in-need areas. The pay-as-you-go model for cloud computing offers agencies the opportunity to do away with software licenses and fees and only pay for what they consume—avoiding costly investments when they only use a fraction of the computing power and potentially saving millions of dollars each year.
Plus, with updates to applications and maintenance falling onto the responsibility of the cloud provider, IT staff no longer need to manage trouble tickets for their department. This frees up time for staff to grow or develop their skillset in other areas, such as forecasting and data analytics.
Data Consolidation and Collaboration
Most agencies are made up of multiple departments which typically need their own IT resources. With an ever-increasing amount of data to maintain, cloud is reshaping the way government agencies tackle data storage. Cloud computing allows for streamlining and consolidating data into an efficient database, thereby allowing agencies to close physical data centers. Government agencies are already familiar with and requiring the sharing of data which makes cloud adoption an advantage in improving business flexibility.
Government employees and contractors can be assigned specific access to private documents or data from anywhere in world. It ensures that critical data is secure and protected while still allowing for simple and effortless business activities.
Operate the Way Consumers Expect
Client services at the local, state, and federal level all can benefit from cloud computing. Consumers have expectations about online access based on their ability to purchase items with a click of a button. The “Amazon Affect” makes it nearly impossible for government agencies to avoid real-time expectation. Cloud simplifies the way users can access and search for data by having an end-user system that is easy to use; therefore, agencies can emulate those experiences and provide a service that consumers enjoy. Agencies can allow citizens to easily pay their bills online or monitor their consumption of water or energy or even access the status of their service requests for maintenance, applications or loans. With so much of our lives online, the government can allow its people to be more informed and empowered to improve their local community.
Data Backup and Redundancy
A migration to the cloud changes the dynamic of how a government agency handles its crisis plan in regard to records and data. Data loss would be devastating for any agency in the government, so including data redundancy in a contingency plan protects them over the long-term and sets a precedence for keeping the risk of data loss minimal. With data moving across networks and locations, applications can be deployed in different data centers all around the world. In the event of a disaster or breakdown at one center, the application will continue to run without any downtime to the end-user.
While the cloud is an excellent addition to any business, it gives government agencies a crucial means by which to meet their service goals. Transitioning to the cloud can be complicated at any level, but with the right team, it can be a seamless process to build a migration strategy. Our team of certified engineers and solutions architects will work with you to ensure you migrate when you are ready.
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