Microsoft, BearingPoint team on government solutions

In the latest move by technology companies and integrators to tailor enterprise software for government customers, Microsoft Corp. said today it will work with BearingPoint Inc. to build solutions for federal, state and local government agencies.

"Government organizations are searching for ways to better meet the needs of their constituents while reducing costs," said Linda Zecher, vice president of Microsoft's U.S. public sector. "Aligning our focus, expertise, assets and resources allows BearingPoint and Microsoft to accelerate innovation and deliver pre-tested, low-risk and cost-effective solutions to governments worldwide."

In March, Siebel Systems Inc. unveiled six government-tailored solutions based on its customer relationship management suite of software tools. Last month, IBM Corp. introduced its IBM Middleware Solutions for Government.

Under today's agreement, Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft and McLean, Va.-based BearingPoint said they will develop repeatable enterprise solutions in the areas of program management, electronic document filing, e-government, Web services, homeland security and public pension administration. They are also launching a new enterprise-planning solution to help federal agencies justify and manage IT projects, programs and portfolios more effectively.

Larry Herman, managing director of state, local and education sectors at BearingPoint, said the integrator is committed to the Microsoft platform, but it's also flexible.

"We're putting a stake in the ground and saying we think these are the right solutions for government agencies," Herman said. But he added that the agreement with Microsoft does not preclude BearingPoint from using other software if that's what its customers want.

BearingPoint worked with the Florida Division of Retirement, which has more than 600,000 active members and 200,000 retirees, to replace a mainframe system with a Microsoft-based solution. As part of the department's Reengineering Improvement and Modernization (RIM) initiative, BearingPoint implemented Retirement Online, which provides self-service for employers, members and retirees.

"Retirement Online has helped us eliminate paper-based payroll reporting, reduce redundant tasks and improve operational efficiencies throughout the organization," said Cathy Smith, retirement administrator for the Florida retirement system.

With 2003 revenues of $3.1 billion, BearingPoint ranked No. 33 on Washington Technology's 2004 Top 100 list, which measures federal contracting revenue.

Microsoft's Linda Zecher, head of the company's U.S. public sector group, will join Washington Technology readers for a one-hour online forum on Wednesday, May 19, at 2 p.m. Eastern Time.

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