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July 10, 2013

IQBG and the Benefits of the Cloud-First Initiative

Ian Armas Foster

As a result of a need to cut costs across the board, the federal government in the United States has implemented a cloud-first initiative, with the idea that clouds, even private ones hosted within the government’s walls, are cheaper to maintain than in-house datacenters.

One D.C.-area company called IQ Business Group (IQBG) has already reaped the benefits of this cloud emphasis, having secured a $53 million contract with the Department of the Interior (DOI) over eight years. IQBG has been tapped to provide the DOI with a workable SaaS platform upon which the federal agency can relocate its emails and files.

The specific executive order that prompted the search for a cloud provider of this nature was Presidential Directive M-12-18, signed by President Obama two years ago. Specifically, the order required that “Federal agencies will manage both permanent and temporary email records in an accessible electronic format.”

IQBG’s email, Enterprise Records, and Document Management System (or eERDMS) is slated to help along the DOI’s Transformation Initiative in its goal to save $100 million in expenses per year. The eERDMS works to capture and classify every single email instantaneously. That mission proves daunting for an organization that receives 75 million digital mails per month.

“We’re the first to provide a comprehensive solution for  e-mail archiving and journaling for an entire cabinet level agency,” said Michael Beck, CEO of IQBG, of what the deal means for government IT and for companies like his going forward, “and our competitors do not have a fully-integrated product in production like ours that includes auto classification, record keeping and eDiscovery support.”

Reportedly, IQBG was able to get the system operational in just 45 days. Such a contract has already bore its fruits for IQBG, as well as its cloud IT chops, as they have seen the public sector account for 65 percent of their revenue and today process an estimated 75 terabytes as opposed to the 10-15 terabytes they were contracted to process last year.

The federal government over the next few years will be looking to offload much of their processing and applications to a cloud-based system, a movement that is estimated to slash 7 percent, or $12 billion on IT budgets annually. Some of those applications will undoubtedly be high performance, and they will also have to be heavily secure. It proves to be a lucrative challenge for cloud servicers and database managers like IQBG over the next couple years.

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