Goodbye to Government

November 1996


Goodbye to Government:

Following are classic models for outsourcing government information technology, but in practice there are numerous variations on each. If these models were placed on a continuum with GOGO (government-owned, government-operated) on the left and wholesale privatization on the right, the trend in the federal government today would be moving from left to right.

  • GOGO. At ground zero, the government owns and operates all the IT equipment, staff and resources. This model is rapidly disappearing.
  • Outsourcing Partnership. In this arrangement, the government owns the hardware and software licenses, and handles the general management of the IT facility, but outsources the technical staff. This type of arrangement is on the rise.
  • Co-sourcing. A government agency partners with more than one private firm and draws skills and expertise. This can be useful in cases where one company has the contract and equipment, and another company has the talent.
  • GOCO. Under a GOCO (government-owned, contractor-operated) arrangement, the government owns the hardware and software, but relies on a vendor to operate the information technology infrastructure.
  • COCO. In a COCO (contractor-owned, contractor-operated) setup, the government outsources the IT work and the contractor takes it off-site to its own facility.
  • Privatization. This is the ultimate form of outsourcing because not only does the government farm out the IT infrastructure and data processing, it hands over the function as well. An example would be an agency that turns over its payroll processing to a contractor. A variation is in-place privatization, where private industry takes over the operation of a government facility and hires all the employees. A major problem with privatization is that the government depreciates inventory differently than private industry. Inevitably, there is controversy over how much the government's IT equipment is worth at takeover time.
Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
Close [ x ] More from GovExec

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.


When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.