Support from the top is critical. Tellingly, more than half (52 percent) believe their organization's senior leaders do not understand the combined impact of the big five on IT. When asked what they most need from their senior leaders, 54 percent of respondents called for clear prioritization from leadership, 47 percent asked for regular coordination across all initiatives, and 44 percent cited the need for standardized documentation of infrastructure requirements.
"If agencies don't align their plans to the major IT trends driving our industry, both cost and risk will increase," said Anthony Robbins, vice president Public Sector, Brocade. "The big five will fundamentally reshape how state and local governments can deliver services to citizens – better services at a lower total cost. Agencies can't afford to wait, but without coordination and planning, network capacity will choke off any chance at delivering benefits."
MeriTalk, a public-private partnership focused on improving the outcomes of government IT, recently announced the results of its new report, “Big Five in Overdrive: Are State and Local Networks Ready?” The study, underwritten by Brocade, examines how the implementation of the big five – data center consolidation, mobility, security, Big Data, and cloud computing – will affect state and local government IT. According to the report, most state and local organizations plan to fully deploy the big five in the next three years, but almost all (94 percent) say their agency is not fully prepared for the resulting demands on the IT organization.