The Unexpected Impact of COVID-19 On Federal Cloud Adoption


As a result of the pandemic, the federal IT landscape is quickly evolving, and agencies are working to implement secure and scalable cloud solutions to keep pace. Historically reliant on dated on-premise infrastructures, the government is now realizing their in-house VPN gateways are incapable of handling the new primarily remote workforce. 

While there is currently a sense of urgency for the public sector to move forward with the implementation of cloud solutions, it is important to note this isn’t a new concept. Cloud implementation has been a component of Federal IT modernization goals for nearly a decade, with its first mention in 2011 with the introduction of the Cloud First Policy. Unfortunately, there has been little progress since then with only about 11% of Federal IT systems migrating to the cloud by May of 2019. 

With this newfound momentum from unexpected remote work needs, agencies must face navigating the long-standing challenges with implementation in a shortened time frame. So, what are agencies’ top concerns, and what long-term benefits might they gain from implementing cloud solutions now? 

Barriers to Implementation

  • Security – Cybersecurity concerns are understood by many as a primary barrier to cloud adoption. Identified as one of three pillars to success in the Cloud Smart Strategy, cybersecurity is essential to a smooth cloud implementation. Compared to the private sector cloud environments, agencies have a more robust security need for monitoring, identifying, and resolving threats. Complicating this is the added threat of employees using personal devices and unsecure networks to complete their work from home, adding to the government’s already vast threat landscape.
  • Cost – Cost is always a major factor when it comes to government procurement,  especially when investing in expensive IT solutions. Agencies with already limited budgets are having to do even more with less in the light of COVID-19. In addition, those who were already in the planning or implementation phase of their cloud journey will likely have to reevaluate their budget. With increased use, capabilities, and storage needed to accommodate a mainly remote work force comes increased costs. 
  • System Modernization – While agencies know they need to modernize, they are notorious for sticking with dated and antiquated systems. Turning interest to action in cloud computing is a complex process. It requires buy-in from decision makers on all levels to move away from the traditional on-prem approach that many government officials are comfortable and familiar with. 

Benefits of Implementation

  • Scalable and future-proofed solution – Now more than ever, the ability to quickly address change is critical. As mission goals and priorities continue to run parallel to COVID-19 response needs, having an environment that can scale and adjust to the unknown future is key to making progress now and in the future. 
  • A Remote Friendly Future – As the nation’s largest employer, cloud computing gives government employees remote access to their environment and the ability to work from anywhere. Remote work results in a number of critical benefits, including: reduced employee absences, reduced overhead costs, and high productivity. In addition, remote work flexibility is a great benefit that can help attract skilled candidates to join the next generation of government IT professionals.  

RSDC: Future-Proofed and Scalable Federal Cloud Solutions in Washington DC

RSDC offers federal cloud solutions that help you reduce your costs and accelerate your IT modernization efforts. We work side-by-side with our government customers to identify the best approach to cloud implementation while mitigating risk and ensuring enterprise wide security in-depth.    

RSDC is with you every step of the way to help you navigate the complexities of AI implementations, so you can focus on leveraging the benefits. We possess a proven portfolio of success with the Department of Homeland Security, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Defense, the General Services Administration, and more. 

Contact us at (703) 310-7913 for more information about our services.

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