Nearly 75 per cent of government IT budgets are staying flat or increasing, according to a survey by analysts at Gartner.
This comes in opposition to a continuing drive, especially in the UK, to lower the cost of government IT contracts by better investigating SME solutions rather than falling back on weighty, long-term contracts with bigger, more expensive suppliers.
“CIOs in government indicated that reducing overall business costs is now more important than reducing IT costs alone, which will permit government CIOs to accelerate enterprise-scale initiatives,” said Gartner’s report.
“The business and technology priorities of government CIOs are strongly aligned with their peers from all industries globally, with a few small differences,” it continued.
One factor Gartner identified for the raise in expenses could come from the shift of business intelligence and analytics from fifth in government priority lists in a 2012 survey, to number 1 in 2013.
If this is an unserved area, the need to invest in its development could be tipping the budget spend.
According to the Gartner Executive Programs 2013 CIO Agenda survey, nearly 75 per cent of government IT budgets are staying flat or increasing.
Greg Day, VP and CTO of EMEA at security firm FireEye, commented: “It’s positive news that organisations are recognising that to leverage the efficiencies that it can bring to businesses they must invest.”
However, Day questioned the choice of intelligence and analytics taking such a leap over and above the constant consideration of security.
“With business intelligence moving to the top of the priority stack followed by updating legacy systems, we must wonder when the same forward-looking view will be applied to their security strategies,” said Day.”All too commonly we see overly complex security controls that have evolved into an ugly kludge, where all too often the same focus is applied generically across the business,” he continued.Day reasoned that if government departments are seeing the value of BI to “help focus the business”, then this principle should also apply to the process and controls that enable them.This will allow departments to “allocate relevant security controls based on the business value of those processes,” said Day.”Typically, security is far from being operationally efficient; if we are reviewing the modernisation of legacy systems security would be one key aspect that is due for a face lift.”