The demand for cloud computing is growing among government agencies, but many IT managers are unsure of how the cloud fits into their long-term strategies, according to a recent survey.

In a report released Monday, Aug. 6, by IDC Government Insights, it was revealed that more than one-third of 400 survey respondents from all levels of government lacked sufficient knowledge of cloud budgeting.

"Survey data indicates that significant progress already has been made for cloud services, but overall progress will only accelerate once several important issues have been addressed," said Shawn McCarthy, research director for IDC Government Insights. "These issues include lack of knowledge by some participants on the level of funding available to them to spend on cloud solutions as well as the needed enterprise architecture changes that can help agencies move more aggressively into cloud. By focusing on greater outreach efforts to bring all IT employees in line with enterprise cloud plans, government agencies can begin to benefit from cloud computing services."

Additional points made in the report include the following:

  • 90 percent of those surveyed anticipated that cloud services would have an impact on computing infrastructure.
  • Local government participants were the least optimistic about the cloud with 14.7 percent saying the cloud wasn't important.
  • Only 60 percent of chief financial officers are at least “somewhat familiar” with their organization's cloud strategy.
  • There is a preference for large cloud vendors (versus small vendors) across all levels of government.

The full report, titled Best Practices: Some Confidence and Some Hesitation--Surprising Results from Our Government Cloud and Enterprise Architecture Survey, can be found on the IDC Government Insights website.