MeriTalk, a public-private partnership focused on improving the outcomes of government IT, today announced the results of its new report, “Modernizing the Monolith: Unlocking the Legacy Data Dilemma.” The study, underwritten by Red Hat, identifies improving data sharing between new and legacy systems as the number one opportunity to accelerate Federal IT modernization and underscores the role of APIs and other next-gen strategies in creating those connections.
While most (73 percent) Federal IT leaders who responded to the survey say their agency has an IT modernization roadmap, progress and foundational steps vary widely. Just under half (48 percent) of survey respondents say their agency has completed an audit of IT systems/applications and has a clear understanding of what’s in the environment; and ‒ more than seven years after the Federal government announced its cloud-first policy ‒ only 37 percent have a clear understanding of what they can move to the cloud.
With all the talk about accelerating IT modernization, entrenched culture persists. Just 20 percent of respondents say they are strongly encouraged to experiment and take risks; although 76 percent report their agency is taking an incremental approach to modernization, reducing the risk associated with “big bang” projects.
Feds see opportunities to accelerate progress by improving the ability to share data between new and legacy systems – 73 percent of Federal IT leaders who responded to the survey say unlocking data from legacy applications is critical or somewhat critical to supporting efforts around shared services and broader government reform. Respondents say improved data sharing is the number one opportunity to accelerate modernization, followed by a clear vision of success, having agency leadership champion the efforts, and better access to the best commercial technology available.
Against this backdrop, 86 percent say APIs are important for their agency’s modernization plans. Half already have a formal integration strategy for connecting applications, services, APIs, data, and devices today, and an additional 36 percent report they are working on one. The majority also believe DevOps/agile integration (66 percent) and open source software (62 percent) will have a positive impact on their modernization efforts.
“Our customers are thinking about modernization differently than in the past,” says Dave Egts, chief technologist, North American Public Sector, Red Hat. “While improving security has long been a top priority, improving data sharing between new and legacy applications using APIs, DevOps, microservices, and more speaks to how government IT is evolving. They are preparing for a cloud future and the need to connect data between clouds.”
Feds see the opportunity to improve mission support with APIs, open source, and improved data sharing. As an example, public safety teams cite the potential to share demographic and economic information faster in disaster areas. Financial teams say they can use data from personnel and finance systems to review project costs and performance. Healthcare-focused agencies anticipate the impact of consolidating health information into a unified system.
“Modernizing the Monolith: Unlocking the Legacy Data Dilemma” is based on an online survey of 275 Federal IT managers in January 2018. The report has a margin of error of ±5.87 percent at a 95 percent confidence level. To download the full report, please visit https://www.meritalk.com/study/modernizing-the-monolith/.
The voice of tomorrow’s government today, MeriTalk is a public-private partnership focused on improving the outcomes of government IT. Focusing on government’s hot-button issues, MeriTalk hosts the Big Data Exchange, Cloud Computing Exchange, Cyber Security Exchange, and Data Center Exchange – platforms dedicated to supporting public-private dialogue and collaboration. MeriTalk connects with an audience of 115,000 government community contacts. For more information, visit https://www.meritalk.com/ or follow us on Twitter, @MeriTalk. MeriTalk is a 300Brand organization.
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