Technology intrinsic to major public projects across the country
In government today, every large public project has technology components. The delivery of citizen services, law enforcement, mobility, health care, education, and even economic development all rely heavily on technology. And, because public officials must continually upgrade, modernize, expand, and protect technology systems and networks, the government marketplace has become a multi trillion-dollar international exchange for tech purchasing. Understandably, the competition is intense.
Success is based on many variables, but early identification of upcoming opportunities is perhaps the first critical component. Pre-sales efforts related to introductory meetings, establishing credibility, gathering information, and positioning well are all necessary activities that require time.
The SPI Team of consultants and researchers examines hundreds of upcoming opportunities every week. Although many technology projects represent mega million-dollar opportunities, thousands of smaller opportunities are available for tech firms. This column provides some of the more common examples of those types of opportunities that will be advertised throughout the U.S. over the next six to 10 months.
The town of Greenwich will launch a cybersecurity program and data loss protection project related to a recent security assessment study. Recommendations from the study included upgrading technology to enable the distribution of redacted documents, improve breach response efforts, process for threat investigation, training, automation of inventory processes, expanding personnel off-boarding processes, and providing other technology infrastructure upgrades. The $2.71 million project will include cybersecurity initiatives.
Additional technology upgrades will feature more core data storage capacity and upgrades to more than 800 workstations and125 servers across 30 locations. This project’s costs are estimated at $160,000.
Cumberland County officials plan to purchase a time and attendance tracking system which will include electronic timesheets, the digitization of data and streamlined comprehensive reporting. Cost estimates for the technology are approximately $220,000.
Additionally, the Sheriff’s Office needs bi-directional amplifiers/repeaters for the detention center, courthouse, and law enforcement facility. The technology will accommodate a transition to a new radio network. Bi-directional amplifiers, boosters, extenders, and repeaters that locate external wireless signals will be included so that the Wi-Fi may be amplified and rebroadcast through a predetermined coverage area. The estimated cost of this has been set at $680,000.
Finally, the county will replace Wi-Fi at its courthouse, library, and other government facilities at a cost of $60,000.
Officials in the city of Riverside will initiate a study in 2021 for a supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) system replacement. This control system architecture project will include computers, networked data communication systems, and graphical user interfaces. The SCADA system project’s estimated cost is $250,000.
The city’s Water Quality Control Plant is slated to implement a technology project that includes the installation of new infrastructure (fiber, access point, and switches) to support upgraded Wi-Fi. The construction project’s cost will be approximately $400,000.
Flathead County’s Human Resources Department plans to implement an electronic timeclock in 2021 that will include software and various types of technology. The new system will allow the capture of essential data in real time, and it will cover all county employees. Each department and division will have customized components, and the overall cost is estimated at $150,000.
In 2021, the county will obtain an offline tape backup system to complement regular backup of data. This effort is designed to protect against cyberattacks, including cryptolocker – a ransomware virus. Although backup systems are one type of data protection, they do not provide protection against cyberattacks. This technology purchase is budgeted at approximately $30,000.
The city of Newburyport will replace and update the fire department’s data control systems and software in 2022. Currently, it is not possible to transfer data to emergency and command vehicles in the field. This project will include upgrading the current technology, obtaining mobile data terminals, and making web-based systems available to emergency scene workers. The cost is estimated at $125,000.
Newburyport’s Police Department dispatch center is more than two decades old and in need of new technology. The facility has added software and numerous screens to monitor cameras at schools, libraries, senior centers, parking garages, and other locations. However, the dispatch center is now in critical need of newer technology. This project’s overall cost is estimated at $475,000.
Spartanburg County will implement a new Disaster Recovery Plan. The intent, as stated, is to ensure the off-site backup of all mission critical data in the event of a natural or cyber disaster. A recent study outlines all changes recommended for the county’s infrastructure, communication, and data backup procedures. The county’s plan includes redundant internet connectivity and a migration to cloud storage. The project’s cost is estimated at $1.59 million.
Another technology project will include the digitization of all county deeds. Once converted, the information will be available online, allowing title companies, law firms, financial institutions, and the general public easier access to the information. Officials have allocated $70,000 for this project, and other technology projects are outlined in the study.
The city of Portage will replace computers in 2021 at a cost of $23,500 as well as server hardware at a cost of $177,000.The current video system at the fire department will be replaced, and technology purchases will include mobile laptops and digitization services. Project costs are estimated at $398,000. Technology upgrades are planned for all patrol vehicles that include technology that allows for electronic traffic citations, computerized crash/traffic reports, and remote-connected handheld devices at a cost of $350,000.
Additional technology purchases will include replacement of program logic controllers and radios for $100,000. In the future, the city plans to replace or upgrade all critical hardware of the SCADA system every five years.
Technology represents the future, and it cannot be ignored by government leaders. It represents a marketplace that will always exist, and public sector needs for new technology will increase each year. Early identification of upcoming opportunities often provides the illusive ‘competitive advantage’ required for success.