Department of Veterans Affairs signs $36m cloud-computing deal

The Department of Veterans Affairs has signed a $36 million deal with HP and Microsoft that will result in 600,000 users being migrated to Microsoft's cloud email and collaboration services. The contract is for 5 years, and involves an initial amount of 15,000 employees being transitioned to Office 365 for Government. The rest of the staff will be transitioned over the rest of the contract's duration.

In total, over 600,000 employees will be migrated to Microsoft's cloud products. Office 365 will be used for nearly all computing activities, including conferences, email, instant messaging, calendar-related activities, as well as adding the use of SharePoint and Office collaboration items. Less the Veterans Department side exclusively with Microsoft, however, it tossed HP into the mix.

HP will provide disaster recovery and work as a systems integrator, according to Information Week. This comes after a deal the VA entered into with Microsoft this past summer that provided it with access to many of the company's applications and services. Says Microsoft, the agency possesses one of the largest technology systems in the country.

The Department of Veterans Affairs employs 6,300 IT workers, and has over 100,000 mobile devices and 400,000 PCs, making it second only to the Department of Justice. The entire network is comprised of 800 clinics, 135 nursing homes, 163 hospitals, and more. What prompted the deal? Transitioning to cloud services is more cost effective than the current setup.

[via Information Week]