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Keywords: shared services, finance shared services, government, cloud computing, Gartner, Gartner's Government IT Sourcing Survey Highlights 2012 report
Matthew Garrow-Fisher | News | 24 April 2012
'Government challenges' have been cited as one of the reasons why governments around the world could choose to adopt cloud computing over shared services in a new report.
Gartner's Government IT Sourcing Survey Highlights 2012 report reveals that along with emerging competition from the cloud, shared services is becoming a less popular option for governments despite the cost benefits it brings.
Indeed, the report, which surveyed 213 IT executives from national, state and local government organisations in the US, Europe and Asia Pacific, found greater interest in cloud computing despite ongoing security concerns.
Seen by Australian news provider IT News, the report revealed that 41% of national governments are planning to move to the cloud, compared to 27% in 2011. Concerns about privacy, security and the lack of maturity of the service are, however, ongoing.
Massimiliano Claps, an analyst at Gartner, told the news provider that one of the reasons for the "marked increase" in adoption of cloud computing is down to shared services bringing "less than satisfactory results".
"[Shared services] risk being displaced by public cloud computing offerings that offer lower total cost of ownership and allow much leaner end-user choice," he remarked.
However, the analyst stressed that governments should not make purchasing decisions with the only aim to be one of reducing costs. Instead, he said that governments must encourage suppliers to take innovative approaches that cut costs and delivery time, as well as fill competency gaps.
Such processes could still be found through shared services options.
Mr Claps' comments echo the plans of the government of New South Wales, which recently announced that it will re-examine its shared services network.
Finance Minister Greg Pearce told the Australian Financial Review that the government will look "very hard" at its shared services and seek ways to get greater value out of it, claiming that it does not always deliver services more cheaply than without it.
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