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Re-thinking Your IT Strategy With Best-of-Breed Cloud Architecture

Modern agencies must often do more with less. Whether it is tightening budgets or shrinking manpower, the pressures agencies face keep growing.

These challenges require agencies to re-think how they automate processes and architect solutions for scalability, flexibility and user experiences. Cloud computing can help agencies with these concerns. While cloud’s affordability, flexibility and scalability are well established, different agencies have different needs. Many agencies are now adopting multi-cloud architectures to create an IT architecture that is right for them.

Multi-cloud architectures combine several cloud solutions into a single architecture. Using multi-cloud architectures, agencies can design an environment that fits their mission requirements best, said Sonny Hashmi, Managing Director, Global Public Sector at Box. Box is a cloud content management solution, enabling digital mission-critical processes like case management and field operations.

Unstructured data, such as forms and videos, comprise about 80% of the data agencies manage. This data often includes the information needed to make informed decisions. By integrating cloud services into their overall system architectures, agencies can seamlessly process, manage and understand their data while automating business processes.

Hashmi detailed three ways agencies can build the right multi-cloud architecture for serving citizens.

1. Streamline IT

Frequently, agencies must try reducing the cost and complexity of their IT infrastructure. By leveraging pre-vetted, secured and scalable IT services designed to integrate with each other, agencies can dramatically reduce the time and complexity involved with delivering business solutions to their stakeholders.

With a multi-cloud architecture, agencies can be selective about which services are needed to deliver results, only pay for what they consume and rapidly deliver solutions iteratively without worrying about future scalability.

2. Embrace Microservices

Microservices are the various services each cloud application offers. For instance, one microservice securely authenticates users, while another microservice enables payment processing.

Thanks to multi-cloud architectures, agencies can choose the most suitable micro-services for a specific business need, instead of repeatedly building commoditized capabilities.

“By consuming the right microservices in the right way in the right sequence in the application, agencies can deliver complex capabilities quickly, securely and costeffectively,” Hashmi said.

Take a common public service such as child support services. Using microservices, agencies can quickly build applications that enable citizens to digitally submit applications for benefits and other related activities. Such an application can be built and deployed within weeks, rather than months or years.

3. Embrace Emerging Technologies

Agencies are looking to deploy promising emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and machine learning in cloud. Machine learning (ML) algorithms gradually improve through experience, while AI mimics such human cognitive abilities as reasoning.

Multi-cloud architectures can easily add one or both tools. Gradually, agencies using AI and ML can remove many mundane tasks their workforces perform daily.

By using Box, agencies can get the instant insights they need — about everything from 911 calls to audio and visual data — for mission success.

This article is an excerpt from GovLoop’s recent guide, “Reinventing Government: 20 Innovations for 2020.” Download the full guide here.

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