Welcome to the New Website for Associated Industries of Florida...The Voice of Florida Business!

IT Governance

Cloud-First Strategy

AIF SUPPORTS a “cloud-first” strategy for the state of Florida. Agencies should be encouraged to pursue cloudbased solutions unless there are justifiable reasons for different approaches. Cloud services would include software, infrastructure, platform, and security as services, as well as other cloud-based approaches.

AIF believes that it should be the goal of the State of Florida to continue to reduce the State’s dependency on the state data center. However, we believe that it is essential to have a strong information technology agency. Florida must have a strong IT agency to provide thought leadership and collaboration with the Legislature, the Office of the Governor and all state agencies on issues related to the effective use of information technology. This would include planning and transitioning to cloud solutions, developing enterprise strategies and assisting with IT policy. The agency should be an ally to all agencies and a conduit for a wide variety of cloud-based solutions—not just state data center solutions. It should be a resource to assist agencies in transitioning to the cloud and other modern approaches.

AIF urges the legislature to implement funding models for the state’s data center that will not place increasing financial burdens on remaining data center customers as others move to cloud-based solutions.

Modernization of Florida’s IT-Based Systems – Enterprise Approaches

AIF SUPPORTS stronger investments in IT and the modernization of Florida’s outdated systems and processes. We believe that IT should be viewed as an investment in the future of Florida. Many of our citizen-facing and business-facing systems, including web portals and call centers, are stove-piped and woefully ineffective. Many of the state’s core systems are decades old and unsustainable. Florida’s transportation system does not leverage the latest intelligent traffic technology to maximize utilization. Our citizens deserve more than piecemeal, outdated systems that run on obsolete infrastructure.

We believe effective enterprise approaches to state processes that cross multiple agencies should be an integral component of Florida’s future strategy. Florida’s citizens and businesses should have easy access to state government and not have to navigate many different agencies in order to exchange information and conduct business with our state government. We believe that a single agency should be responsible for enterprise operational processes that are common to all agencies and that are not specific to the mission of the agencies.

We support an “investment-based” view of information technology rather than an “expense-based” view. AIF believes that the return on the state’s investment should include the value of having citizen and business-friendly systems, the positive impact being to Florida’s economy and the mitigation of the failure of unsustainable systems.

Investment in Cybersecurity

AIF SUPPORTS investment to protect state assets, systems and data.

A significant cyber-attack on our state could have devastating results far beyond a data breach. First responder systems, corrections systems, public assistance systems, food inspection systems, health care systems, and many others could be impacted with catastrophic results.

AIF believes that the legislature should continue to fund comprehensive and on-going security assessments and remediation. We support a strong enterprise security office headed by a well-qualified Chief Information Security Officer.

Improvements in Contracting and Procurement

AIF SUPPORTS the need for open and transparent bid processes and for the modernization of state contracts for IT.

AIF believes that the Department of Management Services (DMS) should be required to maintain state term contracts for information technology services including independent verification & validation (IV&V) services, IT staff augmentation services, management consulting services, cloud services, and IT consulting services. Alternate contract sources should only be used as “alternate” contracting vehicles to supplement state contracts when needed. DMS should not be able to unilaterally allow state contracts to terminate as a means to force agencies and vendors to use “alternate contract sources.” Alternate contract sources should be “alternate” contract sources—not the primary contract source.

AIF believes that the Florida Legislature should make necessary statute changes to allow for the implementation of a vendor registration system for IT services in state term contracts. The current process of determining the vendor pool for state term contracts via a competitive bid process has not worked well and should be changed. Instead, AIF believes that vendors should be able to register at any time rather than having to wait years for the state to issue a new state term contract. Under this approach, when vendors register, they would agree to abide by the terms of the state term contract, attest to legal requirements such as being registered with the Division of Corporations to do business in Florida, and to provide references. This would allow for more qualified bidders, more moderns solutions and more competitive pricing.

AIF believes that all procurements should be noticed via the DMS Vendor Bid System (VBS). Under current rules and statutes, agencies do not have to notify all eligible bidders when an “alternate contract source” or state contract bid is released. AIF believes this practice discourages open competition and opens the door for vendor favoritism. We believe this should be changed.