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CIO of Defense Department Agency cautions against rush to cloud

Kenneth Corbin | Sept. 15, 2014
For all the enthusiasm surrounding the government's move to the cloud -- and there's no shortage -- one prominent federal CIO is emphatic that cloud computing, for all its virtues, is no panacea for the government's technology challenges.

"It was a sense of comfort," he says. "It becomes a significant emotional event"

But Bennett prevailed, consolidating the footprint for the particular operation from 17 locations to four. The service stayed within the DoD's network, but the centralized provisioning led to marked improvements in speed, performance and reliability. Today, Bennett says no one would think about going back to the old environment where each facility was responsible for managing its own box, but the experience provided an object lesson in the cultural challenges CIOs can face when trying to consolidate far-flung, autonomously managed technology processes.

"It's the same thing with cloud, but now we're talking about moving a capability out of the DoD and into a commercial environment. Let me tell you, that's pretty scary for some of us," he says. "It's not a technology issue. It's a mindset issue."

 

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