Large-scale information technology projects can balloon to inconceivable figures very quickly with endless revisions, change orders and delays pushing budgets into the stratosphere. Sometimes the cost of an IT project can be measured simply in dollars, but just as often these projects costly in other ways -- in reputation, for example. With government projects, it's easy to look at the budget and see how much it costs -- or at least how much it's supposed to cost. In the private sector, it's not
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In 2000, The United States Navy and Marine Corps signed a contract with Electronic Data Systems (EDS, now part of HP) for a department-wide network. The network was intended to provide data, video and voice communications for all personnel at reduced cost and enable them to quickly and securely share information. By 2008, NMCI included more than 360,000 computers and served more than 700,000 service members in 620 locations worldwide but had become a synonym for frustration among its users. Cost: $9.3 billion ($6.9 billion for the first five years, plus three optional years).
Google in the Enterprise SurveyThere's no doubt Google has made headway into businesses: Just 28 percent discourage or ban use of its productivity products, and 69 percent cite Google Apps' good or excellent mobility. But progress could still stall: 59 percent of nonusers distrust the security of Google's cloud. Its data privacy is an open question, and 37 percent worry about integration.