The DOD should consider IBM for Jedi

by Ian Campbell August 16, 2021

Microsoft famously won the $10B DOD Jedi cloud contract only to have political pressure bring AWS back into the picture. It looks like the contract will be split into two but before the decision is made, I’d suggest IBM might be worthy of real consideration. The DOD is only considering Microsoft and AWS because they were the only two to satisfy all the certification requirements. By any measure that’s just silly. In this rapidly changing technology environment what is missing today is available tomorrow and obsolete the day after. Better to choose the partner than a snapshot feature list. Especially if you are making a 5- or 10-year decision.

So why choose IBM as the partner? Two reasons: IBM understands mission-critical, and IBM is VERY focused on their cloud and AI effort (two things that should be of critical importance to the DOD).

Let’s put it in perspective. IBM was helping NASA send astronauts to the moon while Jeff Bezos was still in diapers. That same company was processing credit card transactions for real money while Bill Gates and crew were building Windows on DOS and showing users a blue screen on a daily basis. IBM may have dimmed during the dark days of Ginni Rometty but under Arvinid Krisha there’s a new energy in Armonk NY and a clear focus on the cloud and AI. IBM understands business isn’t about primary colors, company ice cream parties, or ball pits in the lobby, It’s about doing the right thing in a professional manner every day, and they have over 380,000 employees that subscribe to that ethos. That’s the attitude of a long-term partner.