In an announcement shared on Google’s Enterprise blog by Boston’s chief information officer, the city has announced it will officially migrate some 76,000 city employees, police officers, teachers, and students to using Google Apps and email services from a variety of alternative systems including Microsoft Exchange.
The Boston official noted the city’s success in adopting Google Apps, particularly for boston.gov email addresses for every city official, due to the minimal effort in maintaining the system thanks to Google’s existing and scaling infrastructure.
According to the city’s CIO, several competitors presented bids before Boston decided to rely on Google Apps for its email and services:
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.
As mentioned in the blog post, the switch allows for Boston’s more than 50,000 public school students to each have their own Google Apps-powered email account without the baggage of a poorly maintained alternative service. The adoption in part contributed to the Center for Digital Government naming Boston the #1 Digital City in America at the end of last year.