We spend a lot of time “following the money” for government information technology. So, it’s intriguing to see occasional spending increases that target specific government IT solutions. Such changes hint at how priorities are shifting and how certain types of solutions are gaining precedence.
That’s why the growth we see for both government mobile solutions, and big data and analytics, caught our eye.
I recently released two forecast documents, titled U.S. Government Big Data and Analytics Forecast, 2017–2021 and U.S. Government Mobility Forecast, 2017–2021. Both Federal and state and local spending is tracked. Both of these documents show significant growth for the IT services portion of those markets. We also anticipate moderate growth for software, while hardware spending will trickle downward slightly. Here are the top lines.
The total U.S. government Big Data and Analytics market (hardware, software, and IT services) will reach a little over $8.7 billion by the end of 2017. That's up roughly 9.5% over 2016. By the end of 2021, spending should reach $13.3 billion. The five-year CAGR through 2021 is expected to be 10.8%.
Mobility solutions for the U.S. government has become a mature market, yet it's a market that continues to slowly expand. Spending on mobility solutions will climb across all levels of government, from $14.1 billion in 2016 to about $20.7 billion in 2021. That's a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 7.9%.
The forecast documents offer further breakouts by major federal agencies, by top 25 states, and other categories. We see government organizations across the board experiencing growth in these IT spending categories.
The Trends Behind the Numbers
Investments in big data are increasing because government agencies want ever-more data to analyze, and they have more data gathering resources to do so. That, in turn, is prompting increased investment in data collection, storage, and associated processing.
At the local level, traffic flow analysis, toll roads, and parking-related data represent significant use cases (and thus investment) for Big Data and Analytics solutions. Mapping of statistics related to crime or service-related details for things like water and sewer systems also represent areas of strong interest for government agencies.
On the Mobile side - many things are helping spur the growth of mobile solutions in government. At the local level, some governments continue to make significant investments in mobile solutions for police, fire departments, and inspection services. At the federal level, the Department of Defense (DoD) is the highest spending agency, purchasing a variety of mobile solutions ranging from ruggedized laptops to mobile applications for things like procurement services and data collection tools.
Mobile solutions can help government workers get out into the field to gather data and to interact more directly with citizens. Gathering and analyzing large data sets helps them do their jobs in a more accurate way.
Together both mobility and big data/analytics have proven to help improve citizen services, which is one key reason why investments continue to increase.