Over the past decade, Government IT leaders have been developing formalized cloud strategies as a result of U.S. Federal Initiatives such as The Cloud First Policy of 2011 and more recently, The 2019 Federal Cloud Computing Strategy (referred to as Cloud Smart). The Cloud First Policy requires government agencies to evaluate cloud computing as part of data center consolidation and optimization efforts. The new Cloud Smart strategy further drives cloud adoption by providing guidance for successful implementations and helping agencies maximize the value of their financial, security, and personnel investments.
Coinciding with the increased interest and adoption of the public cloud, cloud service providers (CSPs) had to ensure that they could deliver services that met government security, compliance, reliability, and availability needs. As a result, Government Cloud (GovCloud) regions became a critical must-have for CSPs who wanted to host critical and sensitive information. Leading CSPs such as AWS and Microsoft Azure have even gone one step further to provide differentiated value at the federal, state and local, defense, and intelligence community levels.
It may not seem like GovCloud regions have had a significant impact on adoption considering some agencies can operate using the commercial cloud, but when you hear about bidding wars for large cloud contracts for government agencies you can bet that GovCloud regions are a weighting factor in those discussions.
For government agencies, not only is hosting data in secure GovCloud regions important, but they must also be able to effectively manage those cloud environments. At CloudHealth by VMware, we support GovCloud accounts for AWS and Azure, for both direct customers and through our partner platform. Through this support, we are helping government IT leaders deliver improved services to their constituents by accelerating migration to the cloud, ensuring effective use of IT funds, and improving operational efficiency.