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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

What will survive into the next administration?

I’ve been involved in several conversations in the last few weeks about what will survive the end of the Obama administration and what will not.

High on a lot of people’s lists is 18F, which they think will not survive. The big knock here isn’t the use of agile development and other techniques to get a quick result. Often the complaint is that the size and scale of the projects are just too small. The hype and promise just doesn’t carry over to large, more complex challenges.

The recent security issue doesn’t help either and adds to the feeling of many that 18F is flaunting the rules.

Another administration initiative that some see not making it into the next administration is Category Management. This one surprises me somewhat but the issue I’ve heard raised is that as the General Services Administration pushes past commodity items and into things such as services it becomes untenable.

Yes, collecting pricing information and finding how disparate prices from one agency to the next for the same product is a good idea. But for services and other more complex purchases, it just doesn’t work is what I’m told.

Category management in some form will be around, I think, but it likely will be more of a data collection tool than anything else.

A couple things I think will survive – Better Buying Power at the Defense Department. It has longer legs and a longer track record. It also tries to address larger issues that DOD has long been challenged by for quite some time. Its name might change but it’ll be around.

Data center consolidation also will be with us for a long time. The buy-in has been very wide and diverse because it addresses the fundamental challenge of scarce resources. It also targets the need to gain efficiencies and bring on new technologies.

Another question I have is what will the next administration embrace as its cornerstone technology initiative?

I’m thinking it could be digital government and more cross agency initiatives, especially when you think about anything that is citizen facing or where a common constituencies has to deal with multiple government agencies.

So that’s what I’m thinking, but I’m very curious about what you are thinking. Use the comment field below or reach out to me directly (nwakeman@washingtontechnology.com) and let me know what you think will survive and what won’t as we move from one administration to the next.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on May 23, 2016 at 9:27 AM

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