Consolidation and the cloud transform Bulgarian government

03 April 2013 | David Burrows, Managing Director of Government Industry, Europe, Middle East & Africa

Many governments around the world – large and small – rely on legacy systems that can be expensive to maintain, difficult to manage, and inconsistent across departments and agencies. Often, organizations are also responsible for maintaining a large number of physical servers associated with these systems, which can be redundant and costly to operate.

But that’s changing as more agencies consolidate legacy systems and physical servers in an effort to operate more cost effectively. Bulgaria’s Ministry of Finance is a great example of an organization that has shifted from an IT environment based on multiple servers to one based in the cloud.

Before moving to the cloud, Bulgaria’s Ministry of Finance managed a number of servers, many of them idle. This created costly and unnecessary issues for the ministry, including hardware maintenance and energy consumption. It also created productivity issues. Instead of employees innovating and driving improvements in performance and reliability, they often spent time maintaining servers and legacy systems. Eventually, the ministry decided it was time for a change. They wanted greater IT reliability, quality, and efficiency – and at a lower cost.

The Finance ministry decided to look for an integrated IT solution that would include both operational management software and support for its data center. Ultimately, they chose a private cloud environment – the first of its kind in the Bulgarian government – because it could enable more automation and standardization, in addition to faster application deployment and monitoring. The ministry selected Microsoft Consulting Services as its partner on the project. Since making the move, the ministry has seen enormous benefits, including:

  • Centralized IT resources: By managing IT systems from a single location, the organization has reduced issue response times by 50 percent.
  • Cost savings: The ministry is saving about €15,000 each year after reducing the number of physical servers by 25 percent.
  • Improved efficiency: The IT department can now deliver services about 60 percent faster because of the infrastructure’s improved reliability.
  • Less complexity: With the IT infrastructure’s increased availability, staff can respond to inquiries more quickly and devote less time to managing the system.

Bulgaria’s Ministry of Finance is a great example of a government organization that’s leading the way in cloud computing. By overcoming challenges such as managing multiple and redundant physical servers, the migration has had a huge impact on both the ministry and on the citizens it serves.

To learn more about the project, I encourage you to check out the full case study.

Have a comment or opinion on this post? Let me know @Microsoft_Gov. Have a question for the author? Please e-mail us at ongovernment@microsoft.com.

David Burrows
Managing Director of Government Industry, Europe, Middle East & Africa

About the Author

David Burrows | Managing Director of Government Industry, Europe, Middle East & Africa

David leads engagement with government customers across EMEA on innovative business strategies using ICT to improve their effectiveness to make a real impact in their communities, regions, and countries.