Few governors mentioned information technology outright in their 2015 “State of the State” speeches. Nevertheless, IT under-girds the projects that governors talked about, particularly in relation to priorities around education, healthcare and transportation infrastructure.
“To find technology in this year’s State of the State speeches, you often need to read between the lines,” Government Technology reported in January 2015.
Technology in Education
Many governors have been urging state legislators to fund projects that put more technology into classrooms as they prepare the next generation for the tech-centric world.
According to Onvia’s Project Center, throughout 2014, state agencies and school districts issued 89% of 1,096 solicitations for computer network equipment for education. The largest portion—64%—were for K-12 educational entities.
Additionally, Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval said the state needs a comprehensive modernization of its 1950s-era K-12 school infrastructure.
Many school districts intend to replace legacy IT infrastructure with upgraded information management systems. These systems can streamline operations. They also can adapt schools to the new era of technology-enhanced learning. Onvia’s platform revealed that in 2014, state agencies and school districts released 45 solicitations that included the keyword “information management system.” K-12 school districts announced 13 awards last year too.
Through March of 2015, SLED agencies and school districts released 601 solicitations for computer network equipment related to educational needs. They have also announced 88 network equipment contract awards
Network upgrades can help can help reduce costs while giving teachers and students a more interactive learning experience. Brad Casemore, research director for data center networks for International Data Corporation (IDC) said that “today, network upgrades are not just about more bandwidth, but also about gaining operational agility and efficiency” in a recent EdTech Magazine: Focus on K-12 article.
Technology in Healthcare
Many governors spoke about healthcare reforms in their “State of the State” speeches and the continued efforts to stay on the cutting edge of innovations. Meanwhile, state health IT officials are trying to implement data sharing and interoperability to coincide with healthcare reforms, according to Clinical Innovation + Technology.
Onvia’s Project Center found state agencies released 66 healthcare technology bids and requests for proposals related to interoperability, 87% of those were requests for software.
Technology in Transportation
President Barack Obama’s Fiscal 2016 Budget proposal included increased funding for intelligent transportation systems (ITS). But state agencies are already investing in ITS — at times with Federal aid.
Last year, Project Center showed that state governments and special districts solicited 93% of 1,938 technology bids and RFPs related to transportation. Digging deeper, computer software and closed circuit television commodities and services represented 47% of those solicitations.
Key Takeaways for State and Local Government Contractors
Governors may not have talked explicitly about IT in their annual “State of the State” speeches, but the need for technology was present nonetheless. IT supports so many projects, such as education and transportation innovations.
As a result, contractors with information technology products and services can find their way into many projects. They can compete to be the prime contractor, or they can work at the subcontracting level, supporting a firm that is working on the broader project.
To learn more about how Onvia can help your business access IT opportunities discover how our solutions serve the following industries: IT software and services, IT hardware, educational products and services, healthcare and medical equipment and transportation.