OMB Releases Final Federal Cloud Computing Strategy

WASHINGTON, DC — The Office of Management and Budget has released the final Cloud Smart strategy that aims to accelerate the adoption of Cloud platforms within federal agencies. In the Report to the President on Federal IT Modernization, released publicly in 2017 in accordance with Executive Order 13800, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) pledged to update the Government’s legacy Federal Cloud Computing Strategy (“Cloud First”). The office has now announced their chosen strategy to accelerate such adoption of cloud-based solutions: Cloud Smart.

“Developed nearly a decade after its predecessor, Cloud Smart equips agencies with actionable information and recommendations gleaned from some of the country’s most impactful public and private sector use cases. Beyond Cloud First, which granted agencies broad authority to adopt cloud-based solutions, Cloud Smart offers practical implementation guidance for Government missions to fully actualize the promise and potential of cloud-based technologies while ensuring thoughtful execution that incorporates practical realities,” the official announcement reads.

“The new strategy is founded on three key pillars of successful cloud adoption: security, procurement, and workforce. Collectively, these elements embody the interdisciplinary approach to IT modernization that the Federal enterprise needs in order to provide improved return on its investments, enhanced security, and higher quality services to the American people.”

Suzette Kent, CIO, US OMB

“To be Cloud Smart, agencies must consider how to use their current resources to maximize value: reskilling and retraining staff, enhancing security postures, and using best practices and shared knowledge in acquisitions. Cloud Smart is about equipping agencies with the tools and knowledge they need to make these decisions for themselves, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach,” wrote Suzette Kent, U.S. Federal Chief Information Officer.

“By leveraging modern technologies and practices, agencies will be able to harness new capabilities and expand existing abilities to enable their mission and deliver services to the public faster. To make this shift, instead of “buy before build”, agencies will need to move to “solve before buy,” addressing their service needs, fundamental requirements, and gaps in processes and skillsets before starting on a new procurement. By rationalizing their application portfolios regularly, agencies can continue to make modernization progress while targets move with the ever-changing technology landscape.”