Boston moves 76K city employees to Google Apps

Every Boston city employee from police officers to public school teachers now have a Google Apps account.
Written by Rachel King, Contributor

Boston has inked a deal with Google making it the latest major municipality to sign onto the Internet giant's business cloud platform.

The capital of Massachusetts has already migrated approximately 76,000 city employees to Google Apps.

That covers every municipal entity ranging from the Boston Police Department to all teachers in the school district -- along with more than 50,000 public school students as well.

Highlighting that it was already named the most digital city nationwide last year by the Center for Digital Government, Boston's chief information officer Bill Oates noted further on the Google Enterprise Blog on Monday that these different departments, such as the school district, were previously operating on "very separate" environments.

Oates's comments suggested that such an upgrade was in the works -- or at least needed -- for some time now, reflecting a common revelation at many government agencies worldwide these days.

Here's more about the city of Boston's decision process, according to Oates:

As the city evaluated an upgrade to communication and collaboration infrastructure, we clearly saw cloud services as the most cost effective, supportable platform to address our future needs. In 2013, following an extensive review of the market, the city initiated a rigorous RFP process that attracted an wide array of bids, including multiple Microsoft and Google cloud offerings. A selection committee composed of members from our City IT organization, Boston Police, and Boston Public Schools evaluated 10 proposals based on both cost and technical capabilities. The committee unanimously chose Google Apps based on its ability to meet the needs of a fast moving city while providing a secure cloud environment.

Along with setting up each public employee with a Google Apps account on top of a Boston.gov account, Oates asserted that Google Apps will serve as "the center" for all cloud-based collaboration and communications going forward.

Editorial standards