FY21 Civilian Budget Request: Look Past the Budget Cuts

By Jessica Parks, Analyst

The president’s fiscal year 2021 budget request has been released, and while you may be laser-focused on this year’s sales, you can bet your government customers are already thinking about next year’s priorities. While the nearly across-the-board cuts at the civilian agencies are grabbing headlines, a deeper dive reveals a treasure trove of high-level plans at a few of the biggest agencies. Factor the following into your FY21 strategy:

Department of Homeland Security

DHS is the top civilian spender on IT and there are some definite growth areas in the agency for FY21. FEMA stands out as a fertile ground for IT vendors as the agency looks to tackle multiple large projects in FY21:

  • Continuing to develop a single cloud-based grants management platform
  • Updating its legacy financial management system
  • Bolstering the efforts of its Enterprise Analytics division to improve infrastructure and data analytics 

The Management Directorate is looking to update its HR systems with self-service tools and automation, develop its modern HART biometric system and increase monitoring of HQ’s WAN.

Department of Veterans Affairs

At the VA, while the ongoing electronic health records implementation with Cerner continues to attract the lion’s share of attention, the agency is also seeking to tackle additional major projects. The VA wants to completely overhaul its financial and acquisition management system, as well as transition to the DOD’s logistic and supply chain system, for which VA’s Office of Information Technology has requested $112M. Think about initiating conversations around cloud solutions with your partners at VA, as the agency has also requested almost $60M for its Enterprise Cloud solution.

Department of Health and Human Services

At HHS, with the third largest IT budget, major initiatives occur at the level of the operating divisions (op-divs). Notably, continuing the theme of modernization, the Indian Health Service is requesting $125M to move to a modern EHR system that will be interoperable with the new system at VA and DOD. CMS will continue to improve its MACBIS data system, focusing on data quality tools, and refresh of its COOP disaster recovery program.

As you can see with this brief sample of initiatives, even with proposed cuts, there will be plenty of insertion points for technology vendors in FY21. Remember, federal IT is mission-driven so if you can demonstrate an understanding of the future challenges the agency will be facing, you’re already ahead of the pack.


If you’re interested in delving in agency priorities and budgets, please reach out to immixGroup’s Market Intelligence team to help support your efforts.

Keep up on the latest trends in government IT. Subscribe to the immixGroup Government Sales Insider blog. 

About Jessica Parks
Jessica Parks is an analyst with the Market Intelligence team at immixGroup, providing actionable analysis to help technology suppliers shorten their sales cycles. She holds a B.A. from the College of William and Mary and an M.A. in political science from UNC Chapel Hill.

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