Software as a Service in the DoD

The enterprise software initiative has a SaaS toolkit located http://www.esi.mil/saas_toolkit/index.html.  Included is a road map and a business model and a list of pro’s and con’s.   What’s missing?

  • Vendor understanding of the DoD market.
  • Certification and IA cost
  • Product management strategy
  • Enterprise licensing strategy that takes into account unanticipated users
  • Consumption assessment – How much will the applications tax the infrastructure.
  • Understanding of maintenance actual.

Not long ago, I approached DISA with some questions concerning their SaaS strategy.   While DISA has the idea in the plan, they don’t have a specific plan on how they are going to implement SaaS, PaaS, or IaaS for a production capability.

The implications of this are that software vendors will eventually have their software wind up on DISA DECC’s (computing centers) but not in the short-term.  Most programs work with short-term manageable goals as opposed to the long-term greater good.  It doesn’t mean that they don’t have the best in mind but programs have to build requirements with what they know today.   In FY12 DISA will start to move forward with SaaS but until then software will be installed and employed in a traditional fashion.

This is an opportunity for vendors and strategists to plan out SaaS with a clear understanding of the environment today.   Cloud computing is here and it is already being employed in the DoD, we need to look ahead with how we are going to manage it going forward.

 

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