Feds Still Lagging on Data Center Closures and Cost Savings


Data center consolidation is nothing new. Yet, many agencies are struggling to reduce their data center footprint, that’s according to a new report from the General Accountability Office (GAO).

In 2010, the Federal Data Center Consolidation Initiative charged 24 agencies with consolidating data centers. As of November 2015, 10,584 data centers had been closed with a total savings and cost avoidances of $2.8 billion between 2011 and 2015 – not bad!

However, three agencies accounted for 84% of those closures – USDA, DOI and the Treasury.  Furthermore, 22 out of the 24 agencies “made limited” progress against the OMB’s fiscal year 2015 data center optimization performance metrics. Two agencies were unable to report progress, while only one of the nine metric targets was met by half of the 12 agencies.

Why is this? Several agencies “reported challenges in meeting OMB’s targets, such as decentralized nature of some agencies,” says the report.

GAO recommends that 10 agencies take action “to address challenges in establishing, and to complete, planned data center cost savings and avoidance targets.” The GAO also pointed the finger at 22 agencies asking them to take action to improve the optimization progress, including addressing any identified challenges.


Caron Beesley Government Writer

Caron Beesley is a technology writer with a specific focus on the government sector.