State and local government organizations recently turned a corner, both fiscally -- their new fiscal year began July 1 -- and perceptually, as a result of tax hikes, operational cuts and fee increases over the past two years.
With the rapid growth in IT spending over the past four years, the competitive landscape in the federal government market has intensified. As I have done for previous Top 100 issues, here are some of my observations about the federal IT market.
Information technology outsourcing is a tough sell in the state and local government market. An arena defined largely by the contract structure, scope and transition of ownership, IT outsourcing can be sidetracked and curtailed by obstacles ranging from turf issues and security concerns to labor unions and public opinion.
As demand for specific technologies and services goes through its inevitable cycle, vendors with the appropriate skill sets will rise, while other vendors will fall. Vendors that once dominated key areas will face internal problems that let a crop of new vendors gain market share. With this in mind, I have outlined three of the emerging competitive issues reshaping the state and local market today.
Given the slow but steady rise in state and local government IT spending, this is a good time to review some characteristics of this market.
Buoyed by federal legislation plus technology refresh cycles and innovation, transportation agencies are at the forefront of significant technology change.
The process is all too familiar. Teams of the best and brightest from government and industry work long and hard in the run up to a contract award.
State and local governments are wary of using unproven, untested technologies, and it's been a significant obstacle to early adoption of emerging technologies to support public-sector processes.
Government leaders are turning more to structured approaches to measure contractor and agency performance.
Rep. Tom Davis (R-Va.), chairman of the House Committee on Government Reform, has introduced the Acquisition System Improvement Act, H.R. 4228, which would create an Acquisition Professional Exchange Program for the federal government and industry, among other things.