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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

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A recent blog on the top 13 trends in the market – or at least my take on 13 trends and predictions – has elicited some good discussion and comments on our Web site, so we’ve decided to try something new and keep the conversation going.

On Mon., Aug. 23 at 1 p.m., we’ll launch our first Twitter chat. I'll be using our Twitter account, @washtechnology, to moderate. Mark your comments and questions with the hashtag #WT13chat.

Our thought is the immediacy and dynamic nature of Twitter will create a different kind of forum for exchanging comments, questions and insights on what is going in today’s government market. 

The blog has drawn several very insightful comments that I encourage you to read and comment on here on the Web page as well as in our Twitter chat.

Deniece Peterson wrote that I missed an important trend: the human capital issue. “We've seen spending increase significantly (120 percent plus increase in discretionary spending alone since FY2000), but the workforce has remained basically flat. As a result, the federal workforce has been struggling to do the work that facilitated the increase in spending.”

She’s worried with the change in tone and the movement to reduce the reliance on contractors without an increase in federal workers. “If the federal ranks don't expand significantly AND contractors are reduced AND major budget cuts/programs don't occur, then who's going to do all the work?” she wrote.

James George argued that government spending needs to shift to commercial investment to renew manufacturing in America. “It should become a requirement that if you want to service the government as a contractor, you must first demonstrate commercial success,” he wrote.

Leemck02 disagreed with George and said that a shift to commercial spending was equivalent to corporate welfare. That kind of spending should be limited to research and development.

“If companies go back to the basics of quality, then people will come back to them because the product or service will give value in balance for the buck,” Leemck02 wrote.

Michal from Dayton said that my blog missed the discussion about the importance of consistent, clean and uniform data as the basis for improving government operations. “Until the government and its various agencies get their data house in order, everything else will be built on a shaky foundation.”

An anonymous commenter from Virginia said the root of the problems in governments is politics.

“The challenges in federal procurement tend to come from the nature of the federal enterprise itself. The tangle of regulations on procurement mirrors their counterparts in other parts of government processes and grow from the political processes that drive them,” the commenter said.

This is just a sampling of the comments. I hope they spark some discussion so bring your thoughts and ideas to our chat on Monday. Don't forget to follow @washtechnology and use the hashtag #WT13chat.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Aug 20, 2010 at 9:44 AM

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