Establishing a Generational Platform

Evaluate the vendor’s product roadmap to ascertain longterm partner stability and project viability


When it comes to core infrastructure investment, perhaps no factor is more important to consider in your project planning than the attributes this infrastructure will provide your organization in terms of long-term product stability, growth potential, and future upgradeability.


Properly sourcing and successfully implementing a government software platform that meets all of your current agency requirements is undoubtedly a career building move. However, sourcing and implementing a solution that becomes indispensable infrastructure for this generation and the next, that is a career ‘defining’ move.


From both an operational efficiency and citizen services perspective, the optimal scenario is a robust toolset and service delivery model that maintains leading edge functionality over the entire lifecycle of the software platform whilst eliminating the taxpayer burdens associated with forced obsolescence and eventual replacement. The key to achieving this win/win for administration and citizenry alike is restricting your vendor selection criteria to include only those vendors committed to substantial longterm R&D reinvestment in their product suite, with an accompanying product roadmap confirming a development path that ideally aligns with your long-term strategic goals.


More than simply an abstract expression of dollars committed to R&D in the future, what you’re most interested in assessing in this area is historic efficiency of spend and commitment to ongoing product refinement as quantified through the following:

  • What is the company’s tenure in the marketplace? 20+ years? 30+ years? 40 years+ or more? Have they demonstrated an ability to effectively iterate their product solutions over a generational lifespan? Do they have ‘institutional’ customers that have been with them since the beginning and remain satisfied with their solutions?

  • What do the lifecycles look like for their core platform and individual COTs products? Is there a clear narrative of consistent upgrades and feature milestones conveying a culture of superior product engineering and innovation? Does this narrative reinforce the ability of the vendor to consistently evolve their product suite to stay current with emerging technology trends?

  • Is there a demonstrable track record of long-term customers increasing the deployment footprint of the technology throughout their organization as the platform has deepened to full  maturity through the product lifecycle? Are their strong indicators of the product consistently establishing itself as indispensable infrastructure for those adopting it?

  • What does the product roadmap look like in terms of near future milestones? Are confirmed next releases delivering robust, leading edge features or do they more resemble ‘catch up’ upgrades providing outdated feature functionality already approaching obsolescence?


Next week, we’ll continue our ongoing series on How to Deploy a Digital Government Platform by showing you how to ‘Set a goal for 100% referenceability and project success and not deviate from this objective.’