Category Archives: CIO

California’s long-running courts’ IT project faces final verdict

By David Bicknell

If there was one place in the world you’d think might be able to get an IT project to improve courts’ systems right, it would be California, the home of Silicon Valley.

Unfortunately not. According to the San Jose Mercury News, there is a risk of the plug being pulled on a proposed system which was intended to link courts to each other and the state’s Department of Justice, and which would replace paper court files with electronic documents, allowing judges ‘with a click of a mouse’ to check everything from criminal histories to child support payments around the state.

But the 10-year project, which has so far cost $560m is running out of money. And now California, which as a state is strapped for cash, and is imposing budget cuts that are closing courthouses, is ready to pull the plug on the project altogether. 

The state’s Judicial Council, which is the court system’s policy arm, will tomorrow weigh up its options and make a decision whether to continue with the Court Case Management System (CCMS) or end the project.

A state audit last year made a catalogue of complaints against the state’s Administrative Office of the Courts for its lack of lack of oversight. It said that the AOC had: 

  • Inadequately planned for the statewide case management project and did not analyse whether the project would be a cost-beneficial solution to the superior courts’ needs.
  • Was unable to provide contemporaneous analysis and documentation supporting key decisions on the project’s scope and direction.
  • Did not structure the development vendor’s contract to adequately control cost and scope—over the course of seven years, the AOC entered into 102 amendments and increased the cost from $33 million to $310 million.
  • Failed to develop accurate cost estimates—in 2004 the cost estimate was $260 million and by 2010 the estimated cost was $1.9 billion.
  • Had not obtained the funding needed for statewide deployment and without full deployment to the 58 superior courts, the value of the project is diminished.
  • Must gain better support from the superior courts for the project—the superior courts of Los Angeles and Sacramento counties asserted that they will not adopt the system unless their concerns are resolved.
  • Did not contract for independent verification and validation (IV&V) of the statewide case management project until 2004 and independent project oversight services until 2007. The level of IV&V oversight was limited in scope and duration.
  • The statewide case management project may be at substantial risk of future quality problems as a result of the AOC’s failure to address certain of the consulting firm’s concerns.

In a telling quote, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye, the Judicial Council’s chairwoman,  is reported to have said it may be time to reconsider the project, comparing it to having “a Ferrari in the garage, but we can’t afford the gas.”

The San Jose Mercury News reported that state lawmakers are now growing increasingly sceptical of paying for CCMS, with one committee last week voting unanimously to put most of the system upgrade on hold.

“Eight presiding judges, including those from trial courts in San Francisco, San Mateo and Los Angeles, last week urged the council to pull the plug,” the San Jose Mercury News said. 

When it was first approved more than a decade ago, the project was an ambitious one.  Its goal was to create one unified system for all of California’s trial courts. The upgrade had widespread support, including from the state’s then Governor Gray Davis, and California was flush with cash to pay for the project.

But as the project progressed, its cost increased, and it has since became a ‘lightning rod’ for California judges who have been absorbing more than $600 million in budget cuts over the past three years.

Now, the state wants to cut the judiciary’s losses and find less expensive ways to improve court technology, by, for example, allowing local judges to pick their own IT upgrades.

“Anyone will tell you, if you’re stuck in a hole, stop digging,” said Sacramento Superior Court Judge Maryanne Gilliard, a leader in the Alliance of California Judges, a CCMS critic. “We’ve spent 10 years on this project. It needs to be declared dead.”

However, the end of the project is not necessarily a forgone conclusion, proving the old adage that no failing IT project can easily be killed off. Now a separate audit released last week has suggested three more options:

  • Deploy the full CCMS program in one test county, San Luis Obispo, which would cost more than $20 million; or  
  • Install it in 10 counties, including Alameda, Marin and Santa Cruz, and wait for the end of the recession before taking it state-wide; or  
  • End the project now. 

The audit has however pointed out that with or without CCMS, many trial courts need technology upgrades that will cost some amounts of money. And it has projected that, by 2017, CCMS would save the state about $33 million a year by cutting the cost of everything from collecting fines to transferring court files from one county to another.

Florida’s IT projects consolidation continues at a glacial pace

By David Bicknell

US states’ recent history on IT projects has been a rollercoaster ride with more downs than ups.

The State of Florida’s recent experiences have mirrored those of  others. As this article details, Florida’s modernisation and consolidation of its IT systems has had its fair share of headlines.

“The tenures of the first two chief information officers were controversial. Both resigned; afterward, auditors found problems with how contracts and agency finances had been managed. The third CIO cancelled the questionable contracts, but the missteps left a shadow over the agency, and in 2005 the Legislature eliminated its funding.”

As the article points out, for many years,Florida’s individual departmental agencies made their own IT decisions, leaving the state with nearly two dozen data centres, 30 e-mail systems, 200 different IT groups and 150 websites. Bush believed merging those systems and centralising control of IT operations would make government more efficient and allow the state to take advantage of economies of scale.

But the process has been a slow one. Almost glacial. A new Agency for Enterprise Information Technology (AEIT) was set up to handle the consolidation efforts and create IT policy — but it has been restricted in its work, designed to be “a small agency with a small staff with a large mission in our hands,” according to  its CIO David Taylor.

The department, with a staff of just 16 and a budget of $1.6 million, cannot dictate what systems other agencies should use and purchase. Instead, its role is restricted to advising departments on strategies like bulk buying and working with agencies to standardise specifications for equipment to help facilitate volume purchases. The agencies, however, aren’t required to follow AEIT’s advice. And bigger IT targets — core business systems, accounting systems and licensing systems – remain untouched.

Taylor believes that the state would be better served by “one unified IT agency” with some teeth to do something — and he may eventually get his wish.

In December, the Florida Government Efficiency Task Force, a panel that provides cost-cutting strategies to the Legislature, recommended giving the agency budget and procurement authority for “enterprise” projects and services and giving it greater power to enforce its standards.

Florida’s modernisation of its IT systems may eventually pick up pace. But don’t expect miracles. Just a crawl.

Even Taylor accepts the need for an almost painfully steady-as-you-go approach. “We should demonstrate that we can be successful in our current consolidation efforts before taking on even greater challenges.”

Francis Maude reforms by saying “no” – a “massive” number of times

By Tony Collins

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude has intervened to reject departmental projects a “massive” number of times says Ian Watmore, Cabinet Office permanent secretary and former Government CIO.

Evidence Ian Watmore gave to the Public Administration Committee last week suggests that the Cabinet Office’s saying “no” repeatedly to departmental projects has changed behaviours within the civil service.

Watmore, the Cabinet Office’s permanent secretary, told Tory MP Charlie Elphicke, that Francis Maude and his officials now have the power to challenge departments’ civil servants who try and ignore Cabinet Office recommendations.

“In the past, those controls did not exist so they [officials in departments and agencies] could ignore us if they wanted to and carry on as before,” said Watmore. “Under the new regime, they cannot do that because in the end, if they ignore the recommendations that we come to, then they have to seek approval for the expenditure they were going to make on their projects and Francis Maude would, in his own words, happily say ‘no’ in such situations, and say ‘no’ again until people actually came to the table and changed what they were doing.”

Elphicke: Has he done so to date?

Watmore: Yes, an absolutely massive number of times.

Changing behaviour

Since departments have found it harder to get the Cabinet Office to endorse their projects, departmental officials are now “bringing their plans to us much earlier in the timeframe because they do not want us saying ‘no’ when it is well advanced”,  said Watmore.

“So we are getting into a dialogue with them early on about what the best way of doing something is. When we have agreed on the best way of doing something, when it comes back for approval, it gets nodded through and that is working much more effectively.”

Watmore added that the Cabinet Office’s controls will become redundant over time “because people will behave the right way”. He said: “Like the Carlsberg complaints department was the analogy I had in my head; it exists but it is never used.. At the moment we use it a lot because, left to their own devices, people would do things that were suboptimal when you look at it from across Government.

“Francis Maude is in a position to say, ‘No, you are not doing that. You are going to do it this way and reuse somebody else’s system or somebody else’s way of doing things’. He is very hands-on and vigorous at doing that.


Watmore’s evidence confirms that Maude remains the mainspring of change in the way government works. Without Maude the unreasonably costly status quo would prevail.  He may be in danger of spinning. But how many ministers like to say “no”? He is invaluable for that reason alone.

What will happen when Maude is promoted, stands aside or retires?  The minister who likes to say “yes”  will earn the respect of some of his civil servants. The refreshing thing about Maude is that he is happy to take his plaudits from taxpayers, not officialdom.

Watmore’s evidence to the Public Administration Committee, 13 March 2012.

Institute for Government open letter on civil service reforms – the problems and opportunities.

Zizzi Restaurant lands Corporate IT Forum award for innovative CSR project

By David Bicknell

Zizzi Restaurant picked up the IT project of the year  accolade in The Corporate IT Forum’s 8th Real IT Awards held last night.

Zizzi’s ‘Pennies with Zizzi’ project involved working with The Pennies Foundation to create an electronic charity box that allows customers paying by card to donate spare change to charity.  The corporate, social and environmental responsbility project is already on track to deliver £100,000 of micro donations to The Prince’s Trust.

According to the judges, drawn from leading UK and international user organisations such as South West Water, DHL, GlaxoSmithKline and Laing O’Rourke, “Zizzi showed its determination to create a way of supporting casual donations in the new age of electronic payment; they paid close attention to communications to make sure all stakeholders – particularly customers – would embrace it. We were very impressed by the way this was driven by the IT department.”

The Real IT award winners covered a broad spectrum of corporate IT users including public and private sector organisations such as HM Revenue and Customs, Balfour Beatty, The Environment Agency and British Sugar, as well as high street retailers New Look and Pizza Express.

The winning entries across 13 categories ranged from the world’s first ever iPhone app for payment by smartphone, to a targeted flood warning service for emergency flood responders and a rapid deployment of IT project in the new Tripoli.

The awards featured new categories to recognise the breadth of innovation being provided by and the growing importance of corporate IT within business.  The additions included Innovation in Business, Innovation in Mobile, Security as an Enabler and Social Media.

A new skills-related category, Developing Talent in Business, was also introduced, reflecting The Corporate IT Forum’s desire to tackle the education, training and skills challenge.  In this new category HM Revenue and Customs was recognised for its ‘Capability Development Programme’, a programme of investment in employees designed to establish them as experts in their chosen field, with external accreditation of their professional skills.

Chairman of The Corporate IT Forum John Harris said, “What is particularly striking this year is that the innovation we are seeing is in areas where IT is giving something back, rather than where it is solely focused on delivering cost savings and doing more with less.  This year IT is all about listening to user and customer needs – within the business and externally – and coming up with innovative ways to make things faster, easier and more efficient for them.”

Throughout the coming months the winners and runners-up will present their projects through Forum workshops that are open to all user organisations. By collating learning and sharing their experiences, the Corporate IT Forum suggests, corporate IT departments will become more proactive and successful in delivering business advantage for their organisations.

The Winners of the Real IT Awards:

Overall winner – Project of the year 2012

Winner: Zizzi Restaurant – Pennies with Zizzi

Runner-up: GlaxoSmithKline – Diseases of the Developing World

Corporate, Social and Environmental Responsibility

Winner: Zizzi Restaurant – Pennies with Zizzi

Delivering Business Value and E-Commerce

Winner: Land Registry – Register Extract Service

Developing Talent in Business

Winner: HM Revenue and Customs – Capability Development Programme

Innovation in Business

Winner: Environment Agency – Targeted Flood Warnings

Innovation in Mobile

Winner: Pizza Express – Pizza Express App

Innovation in Technology

Winner: Environment Agency – Targeted Flood Warnings


Winners: GlaxoSmithKline – Diseases of the Developing World

And: The Co-operative Banking Group – The Big Card Programme

Rapid Response

Winner: Foreign & Commonwealth Office – Tripoli – Rapid Deployment of IT

Security as an Enabler

Winner: GlaxoSmithKline – Secure Enhance

Service Improvement

Winner: Balfour Beatty – Platform for Growth

Social Media

Winner: New Look – NL Daily

Working Smarter

Winner: British Sugar – Load Slots – Optiflex

A full list of winners and runners up is on the Corporate IT Forum website

Change division helps Bendigo Bank transform IT project outlook

By David Bicknell

A report from Australia has suggested that scrapping the chief information officer’s (CIO) role and replacing it with a change division enabled Bendigo Bank in Australia to slash its IT project failure rate.

According to an article in ITNews, establishing the change division  prompted better project delivery priorities and outcomes over the past two years, and may have  improved the rate of successful projects by 50 percent.

ITNews reported that, “In early 2010, the bank’s CIO Andrew Watts became the executive of a new ‘change’ division, which included 140 technologists, such as business analysts and project managers.

“Those technologists joined some 60 staff from elsewhere in the business, with the division aimed at overseeing business architecture and project delivery across ‘people, process and technology’.

“Other technologists formed a rebranded ‘technology services’ team, led by general manager Gary Doig and charged with managing the bank’s IT operations.”

Bendigo Bank believes that high business ownership across its projects has become  one of the most important foundations to deliver project success.

Related Links

Reuters: Banks team up to cut tech spend burden

ITNews (Australia) site

New child support system has 90,000 requirements – in phase one

                               A new old-style government IT disaster?

By Tony Collins

While officials in the Cabinet Office offcials try to simplify and cut costs of Government IT, a part of the Department for Work and Pensions has commissioned a system with 90,000 requirements in phase one.

The projected costs of the child maintenance system have risen by 85% and the delivery date has slipped by more than two years.

Even with 90,000 requirements, phase one, which is due to go live in October, excludes 70 requirements that are “deemed critical” says a report published today by the National Audit Office.

The NAO report indicates that the Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission has commissioned an old-style large IT system using traditional developing techniques and relying on large companies.

G-Cloud and SMEs have not featured in the Commission’s IT strategy – and it abandoned agile techniques last year on its child maintenance project.

The Commission put the cost of its new child maintenance system at £149m in January 2011. Ten months later it put the cost at £275m, an 85% increase. The Commission was unable to give the NAO a full explanation for the difference.

Lessons from past failures not learned?

Today’s NAO report says there is a risk the Commission will repeat mistakes by the Child Support Agency whose IT system and business processes were criticised in several Parliamentary reports. The Commission takes in the work of the Child Support Agency – and indeed runs its own systems and the Child Support Agency’s in parallel.

Officials at the Commission told the NAO they have a good track record of holding back IT releases until they are satisfied they will work.  “Nevertheless, we found that the Commission is at risk of repeating many of the mistakes of 2003,” said the NAO. Those mistakes include over-optimism and a lack of internal expertise to handle suppliers.

Mixing “agile” and “waterfall” doesn’t work

Initially civil servants at the Commission tried to “mix and match” agile and traditional developing techniques – which Agile advocates say should not be attempted.

In 2011 the Commission gave up on agile and “reverted to a more traditional approach to system development” says the NAO report.

The mix and match approach meant there were two distinct routes for specifying requirements and “resulted in duplicated, conflicting and ambiguous specifications”.  The Commission did not have previous experience of using the agile approach.

The Commission’s child maintenance system was due to go live in April 2010 but the delivery date has slipped three times. Phase one is now due to go live in October 2012 and phase two in July next year but the NAO report raises questions about whether the go-lives will happen successfully. The Commission has not planned in its financial estimates for the failure of the system.

The NAO finds that the Commission has struggled to make its requirements for the new system clear. The Commission’s main developer Tata Consulting Services has had protracted discussions over the meaning and implementation of requirements.

The NAO also hints that IT costs may be out of control. It says the Commission may not secure value for money without properly considering alternative options for restructuring and “adequately controlling its IT development …”

These are some of the NAO’s findings:

IT costs could increase further

“The new system is based on ‘commercial off-the-shelf’ products. However, a recent audit by Oracle identified that the performance, maintainability and adaptability of the new system would be key risks. This could increase the cost of supporting the system. The scheme does not yet include plans for the integration with HM Revenue & Customs’ Real Time Information system due to be implemented in 2013, or introducing Universal Credit because of the differing timescales,” says the NAO which adds:

“Achieving the Commission’s plans without further cost increases or delays appears unlikely. The Commission reported to the audit committee in October 2011 on the high risk that the change programme may not deliver phase two functionality within agreed timescales … The Commission did not develop a benefits realisation plan until November 2011.”

103,000 of Commission’s 1.1m cases are handled manually

“Ongoing technical problems have resulted in a large number of cases being removed from the IT system and managed manually. These are known as clerical cases … The Commission has had to operate the ‘old’ and ‘current’ schemes in parallel.  Due to flaws in the IT systems for each scheme, some 100,000 cases have had to be processe:d separately by clerical staff at a cost of £48 million,” says the NAO. It takes 900 contractors to manage the clerical cases.


Despite numerous NAO reports on failures of Government IT-based projects over the past 30 years the disasters are still happening, with the same mistakes repeated: over-optimism in every aspect of the project including timetables and financial estimates; excessive complexity and over-specification, no sign of cost-consciousness and, worst of all, an apparent indifference to being held accountable for a major failure.

A glance at the monthly outgoings of the Commission (well done to the coalition for requiring departments and agencies to publish contracts over £25,000) show sizeable and regular payments to familiar names among the large suppliers: HP Enterprise Services (formerly EDS), Capgemini, Tata Consultancy Services, BT Global Services and Capita. There is hardly an SME in sight and no sign of imaginative thinking.

Meanwhile some senior officials at the Commission put in monthly expenses for thousands of pounds in travel, accomodation and subsistence for “Commission meetings”. One wonders: to what useful effect?

Officials at the Cabinet Office are trying to change the culture of departments and agencies. They are encouraging departmental heads to do things differently. They advocate the use of  SMEs to show how new ways of working can trounce traditional approaches to projects.

But the Cabinet Office has little influence on the Department of Work and Pensions. Indeed the DWP has lost its impressive chief innovator James Gardner.

We praise the NAO for noting that the Commission risks repeating the IT-related and project management mistakes of the Child Support Agency. But we note with concern that the NAO still puts up with Whitehall’s non-publication of  Gateway reviews, which are independent reports on the progress or otherwise of big and risky IT-based projects.

Would the Commission have been so apparently careless of the risks if it had known that regular Gateway reports on its shortcomings would be published?

How many more government IT-based projects are late, over budget and at risk of failing, their weaknesses hidden by an unwritten agreement between the coalition and civil servants to keep Gateway reviews secret?

NAO report – Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission: cost reduction

Government repeating child support mistakes – ComputerworldUK

Has the CIO become the Chief Invisible Officer?

I read an article in the Wall St Journal today all about the role of chief financial officers (CFO) in increasing investments in IT to maintain a competitive edge.

The piece refers to a Colorado company, CH2M Hill, which is cutting back on expenses like corporate events and bonuses for employees, yet it plans to boost its $100 million-a-year IT budget by upto 20% this year. In part, the money will go to fund new systems that will make it easier for workers to use a variety of mobile devices on the job.

“We’re very concerned about the economy and trying to take some measures to cut costs,” says Mike Lucki, CH2M’s chief financial officer. “But this is an investment that we need to make to stay competitive. If you don’t do it, you’re not in the game.”

The thought struck me that when I read that quote that how often do you ever hear a CFO talking about getting a competitive edge? Shouldn’t that be the language of the CEO? And, aspirationally, what the CIO should be saying?

There’s nothing in this Wall St Journal piece about the role of the CIO. That’s not a criticism of the piece at all, simply  the fact that CIOs seem to be anonymous in the corporate culture.  As the article suggests, ‘CFOs are often the executives calling the shots on tech purchases. According to research firm Gartner, for instance, 44% of IT departments report to CFOs.’ The article seems to suggest that there are IT departments – but no IT leaders. (Or at least, in this case, none that the Wall St Journal deemed noteworthy enough to speak with)

Has the CIO become the Chief Invisible Officer? Perhaps, to take a line from Mike Lucki’s quote, it’s time CIOs made a strategic investment (in their visibility) to stay competitive, because, to nick another line, “If you don’t do it, you’re not in the game.”

Or has the corporate balance of power so shifted in current times that the corporate officer that pays the piper is so clearly now calling the tune?

Is it time that CIOs started to shout more from the rooftops about their value?

Heads of finance hate big-bang IT projects

CIOs must lead business change with consumerisation, Cloud focus

By David Bicknell

Some work published by PwC in the US has argued that top-performing U.S. organisations show greater mastery in how they leverage digital technologies by the way they embrace consumerisation, the Cloud and social media.

The management company’s Digital IQ survey says these companies are offering mobile tools for customers, measuring data through social media, mobilising applications to the public cloud and are applying innovative use of business intelligence. It also finds that most enterprises are still playing catch-up on the consumerisation of IT.

PwC believes the CIO plays a critical role in the planning process for increasing a company’s Digital IQ. It argues that CIOs must be excellent at managing the internal factory, but also excel at mobilising new plans into action.  

The Digital IQ findings call for business leaders — and, in particular, today’s CIOs — to lead their organisations to change and innovate from the inside out. The report findings suggest that excellence in IT has not been commoditised and is still differentiating as a competitive advantage. Indeed, IT-enabled, multi-channel connections with customers can make a marked difference to business results. But to succeed, today’s CIOs — and the C-suite more broadly — must excel at not just managing internally, but also mobilising new plans into action.

PwC argues that a high Digital IQ requires the CIO to find better ways to sift through and drive insight from the increasing torrent of data streaming from every manner of device and interaction, and to create a platform that can deliver these capabilities across a varied set of changing mobile devices.

PwC’s survey showed that 63 percent of respondents revealed their greatest challenge is the inability to gather, understand and act on customer data. Fifty-eight percent cite an inability to quickly understand and adopt the new information technologies needed to be competitive.

“Consumerisation of IT is on the rise, and in the Survey we continue to see a need to serve the mobile customer, move to cloud services, and use data more effectively,” said Chris Curran, principal at PwC. “Organisations that have an integrated strategy—which includes technology—seem to perform better.”

For those interested in the consumerisation of IT, the Corporate IT Forum is holding a summit on the subject in London on 22nd February.  You can find out more details here

New Gov’t CIO – a perfunctory appointment?

By Tony Collins

The Cabinet Office announced yesterday that the new government Chief Information Officer is Andy Nelson who will “hold the role alongside his existing position as the Ministry of Justice CIO”.

Nelson takes over from Joe Harley who will be retiring from the civil service at the end of March.

Ian Watmore, Permanent Secretary, Cabinet Office, said “It is fantastic to be able to assign the role of government CIO to someone who has held major CIO roles in private sector and has been involved in the ICT strategy since the very beginning.

“Andy has worked closely with Joe over the past months and will continue to do so – ensuring that we continue to deliver ICT services fit for a modern civil service.”

When the MoJ advertised for a CIO in May 2009 it asked for a candidate to “drive a harmonisation, simplification and streamlining agenda, creating a more efficient and effective IT framework”. That’s close to what Nelson will be expected to do as government CIO.

But there are some signs that the Cabinet Office considers the government CIO role as more titular than strategic. Nelson’s CIO job at the Ministry of Justice is challenging enough without the wider government CIO role.

Last month a report published by the National Audit Office highlighted how limitations in Libra, a case management IT system in use across magistrates’ courts, has contributed towards  HM Courts Service’s inability to provide basic financial information to support the accounts.

Yesterday UK reported that the recruitment process for a government CIO did not involve external advertising and that interviews were held last week, which suggests the appointment did not involve a long and difficult process.

Sir Ian Magee, a senior fellow at the Institute for Government has called for a “truly independent government CIO”, adding that “doubling-up” was not the answer to meet the demands of the Government ICT Strategy, reports

Nelson does, however, have the credentials for working at the top of government IT: he was a management consultant at Accenture if only briefly, and has a private sector CIO background.

G-Cloud – it’s starting to happen

By Tony Collins

Anti-cloud CIOs should “move on” says Cabinet Office official, “before they have caused too much harm to their business”.

For years Chris Chant, who’s programme director for G Cloud at the Cabinet Office, has campaigned earnestly for lower costs of government IT. Now his work is beginning to pay off.

In a blog post he says that nearly 300 suppliers have submitted offers for about 2,000 separate services, and he is “amazed” at the prices. Departments with conventionally-good rates from suppliers pay about £700-£1,000 a month per server in the IL3 environment, a standard which operates at the “restricted” security level. Average costs to departments are about £1,500-a-month per server, says Chant.

“Cloud prices are coming in 25-50% of that price depending on the capabilities needed.”  He adds:

“IT need no longer be delivered under huge contracts dominated by massive, often foreign-owned, suppliers.  Sure, some of what government does is huge, complicated and unique to government.  But much is available elsewhere, already deployed, already used by thousands of companies and that ought to be the new normal.

“Rather than wait six weeks for a server to be commissioned and ready for use, departments will wait maybe a day – and that’s if they haven’t bought from that supplier before (if they have it will be minutes).  When they’re done using the server, they’ll be done – that’s it.  No more spend, no asset write down, no cost of decommissioning.”

Chant says that some CIOs in post have yet to accept that things need to change; and “even fewer suppliers have got their heads around the magnitude of the change that is starting to unfold”.

“In the first 5 years of this century, we had a massive shift to web-enabled computing; in the next 5 the level of change will be even greater.  CIOs in government need to recognise that, plan for it and make it happen.

“Or move on before they have caused too much harm to their business.”

He adds: “Not long from now, I expect at least one CIO to adopt an entirely cloud-based model.  I expect almost all CIOs to at least try out a cloud service in part of their portfolio.

“Some CIOs across government are already tackling the cloud and figuring out how to harness it to deliver real saves – along with real IT.  Some are yet to start.

“Those that have started need to double their efforts; those that haven’t need to get out of the way.”

Cloud will cut government IT costs by 75% says Chris Chant

Chris Chant’s blog post