Blog #9 — Spotting Emerging I.T. Adoption Trends in the Federal Market

Gaining an Analytics Edge Using Federal Spending Open Data Series


Premise of this Blog Series: Publicly available “open data” sources and open-source technology analytics can provide information to reduce uncertainty when making critical business investment decisions.


Many professional services companies in the Federal market have successfully expanded their business by riding an information technology (I.T.) adoption wave. Whether your company is a system integrator, technology specialists, business consulting, or staff augmentation firms, there are growth and profit opportunities if you can gain a competitive advantage before services around a growing technology are commoditized. Those advantages include:

  • opportunities to develop mission and function-specific add-ons,
  • work plan estimation and risk management insights,
  • the attraction of talent,
  • marketing attention for early wins with customers,
  • valuable past performance, and
  • an opportunity to provide thought leadership in influencing prospective customer adoption of the technology.

Let’s get started with the Analysis

We will use open data for this analysis (we will use opportunity and award archive text with NLP tools in a future blog).

Convert to Pivot Table Format for Easier Trend Spotting

The next step is to create pivot table versions of the records to identify trends in mentions (‘count’) and spending (‘federal_action_obligation’) over time and compute some year-over-year (YoY) ratios. Viewing the records in this way makes it easy to sort the data and also plot trends. The spending amounts listed are not one-for-one with the products. It only means those obligation dollars are associated with that term. It might be the case where multiple technologies appear in the text (e.g., Splunk hosted on AWS), and I have allocated the same spending to both, which oversates the amounts. The purpose of this stage of analysis is to paint a broad picture to motivate a detailed analysis.

Trends in Count of References to the Technology Name
Trends in Obligations Associated with References to the Technology Name

Exploration of the Growing RPA Segment

One of the hot growth areas in enterprise software is Robotic Process Automation (RPA). You can see firms such as UIPath, Blue Prism, Automation Anywhere, WorkFusion, and Pegasystems growing in citations.

Coming Attractions

I will explore more analytical and market topics in future blog posts — including more market-share trend analysis and NLP techniques using and award and opportunity textual data and mashups with other open data sources.

Strategy, emerging technology, innovation, and management advisor,

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