Government IT

In D.C., IT Procurement Takes Center Stage

Posted In Looking in Tech
Washington D.C.
What’s New This Quarter Washington’s very messy year came to an end with a mid-December plea from President Obama to Silicon Valley’s top executives for advice and guidance in improving the Affordable Care Act’s technological underpinnings. Perhaps the only good thing to come out of the disaster is that tough questions about how the government buys and builds information technology are now a topic of serious debate. Editorial writers are calling for smarter IT buying, agile development processes, and… continue…

Obama Mulls Creation of IT Mega-Agency

Posted In Looking in Tech
U.S. Capitol
After the disastrous launch of, the Obama administration is considering creating a one-stop shop that handles all federal tech projects, rather than have them overseen by a myriad of government agencies. Each year, the federal government spends $77 billion on IT, but the White House isn’t convinced taxpayers are getting the most for their money. The Department of Health and Human Services spent at least $319 million on the controversial website, but as The Washington Post found out,… continue…

House Delays Reform of Federal IT Spending

Posted In DataCenter
The U.S. House of Representatives nuked a plan to overhaul how the federal government buys and manages IT. continue…

Local Governments Face IT Talent Squeeze

Posted In Looking in Tech
Tech companies aren’t the only organizations scrambling to find qualified tech professionals. Local governments are feeling the pinch, as well. A big reason: Senior government IT executives are preparing to retire and potential replacements are few and far between, according to Government Technology. The recession has kept the problem at bay for a while, with its budget cutbacks, layoffs and caps on hiring. Local CIOs outsourced IT systems, brought in consultants and took advantage of computer services and software on… continue…

Budget Deal May Not Address Hiring Jitters

Posted In Looking in Tech
Though the prospect of the Federal sequester cuts has been weighing on tech employers’ minds, the budget agreement worked out this week in Congress won’t necessarily calm their economic jitters, says Victor Janulaitis of consulting firm Janco Associates. In his latest analysis of monthly job statistics, Janulaitis said the sequester was among the factors fueling employers’ unease about the economy and what he called the “anemic” IT job market. “I think [the budget deal] might eliminate some of the job… continue…

Governments Worry Over Lack of IT Talent

Posted In Looking in Tech
Federal and state government agencies facing an IT talent shortage are struggling to deal with an IT talent pipeline that is rapidly drying out, according to a report by Washington-based Freedman Consulting. “Technology talent is a key need in government and civil society, but the current state of the pipeline is inadequate to meet that need,” the report says. “The bad news is that existing institutions and approaches are insufficient to build and sustain this pipeline, particularly in the face… continue…

D.C. Grapples With Public Sector IT Slip-Ups

Posted In Looking in Tech
What’s New Before the fiasco, the biggest technology news to shake up Washington last quarter was only tangentially technological: Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos’s successful purchase of The Washington Post. “Don’t be boring,” Bezos told the paper’s (unionized) staff. His business exploits never are. Amid continuing discussion about how the National Security Agency operates and what, exactly, it does with the petabytes, exabytes and zettabytes of data it has the power to collect came an announcement that the agency will… continue…

Amazon’s Seeking Engineers for Super-Secure CIA Cloud

Amazon Logo
Having trumped IBM for a $600 million cloud contract with the Central Intelligence Agency, Amazon Web Services is hiring the hundreds of engineers and other professionals necessary to bring the spooks’ new super-secure cloud to life. The company is reportedly hiring 500 employees at AWS’s recently opened Herndon, Va., facility, located not far from CIA headquarters in Langley. Included in many of the descriptions posted on Amazon’s jobs site is a qualification already familiar to those the company expects to… continue…

Shutdown Halts VA Software Development

Posted In Looking in Tech
The Department of Veterans Affairs has halted all software development, including work on a $491 million paperless Veterans Benefits Management System, according to Nextgov. The news comes after the department furloughed 2,754 IT employees. The VA also furloughed its 7,000 employees processing disability and education claims, and has closed public access to the Veterans Benefits Administration’s 56 regional offices. Victoria Dillon, acting VA press secretary, said that the IT employees were furloughed after 2013 carryover-funding balances were “exhausted.” VA Secretary… continue…

Amazon, Microsoft Cloud Services Could Suffer from Shutdown

Posted In Looking in Tech
Microsoft, Amazon and other Seattle-based companies that offer cloud services may take a hit if the federal government shutdown lingers. With hundreds of thousands of federal workers on furlough, the need for cloud solutions may prove to be less-than-critical. Typically, the government, as well as private sector customers, pay for cloud services on a monthly basis or with an annual subscription. If those customers terminate their agreements early, providers lose expected revenue, even though they’ll often collect a penalty fee.… continue…