Application Brokering

Application Brokering involves the coordination and management of a subset of IT services required in support of systems hosted outside the state datacenter. While Cloud Computing Terminology includes a broad range of topics, NDIT's Application Brokering role focuses around the concepts of Software as a Service (SaaS) and external hosting providers.

Application Brokering Components

Historically, ND State Government mostly utilized on premise computing environments in support of its line-of-business applications. In recent years, the maturity of cloud computing and the shift towards Software as a Service (SaaS) has redefined the IT landscape. However, simply moving applications to the cloud or to an outside provider does not alleviate the need for a subset of NDIT services.

Application Brokering helps to ensure that the costs for core professional and infrastructure services are distributed equitably across all of the state's line-of-business applications. It encapsulates the people, process, and technology associated with providing enterprise management and end-to-end solutions that are not reflected in most base contracts for cloud computing solutions, including:

  • Security services
  • Directory services
  • Network connectivity
  • Architectural design and maintenance
  • Integration architecture
  • Incident, change, and configuration management
  • Procurement and contract coordination
  • Compliance and risk assessment
  • IT planning and portfolio management

These services will continue to be bundled within NDIT's hosting and storage rates for on premise applications. Application Brokering will ensure a consistent approach to Software as a Service (SaaS) offerings and externally hosted systems.

NDIT's Cloud Strategy

NDIT's cloud computing strategy is based on a hybrid environment, which leverages the existing on premise environment when possible and selectively utilizes the external cloud when beneficial. Using the on premise environment, sometimes referred to as a private cloud, allows the state to leverage existing investments in infrastructure and provide a stable and secure environment that agencies and citizens can rely on.

ITD's 2015-17 Strategic Plan includes the following cloud related initiatives that further reflect its strategy and direction:

  • Expand communication with stakeholders regarding cloud services
  • Align NDIT’s rate structure with the evolving cloud-based technology landscape
  • Improve data-driven decision-making by more effectively leveraging information from internal systems
  • Develop a decision-making framework to guide cloud, hybrid, and on premise architectures
  • Develop procurement practices and enterprise architecture standards for cloud services
  • Develop and establish NDIT’s role in brokering enterprise cloud services
  • Determine the network, computing, and software architecture necessary to support cloud services
  • Determine the staffing impact of cloud services

Statutory Hosting Policy

North Dakota Century Code (Chapter 54.59.22) mandates that NDIT must provide hosting services for electronic mail, file-and-print server administration, database administration, storage, and application servers. Therefore, a Request For Exemption from the Statutory Hosting Policy is needed prior to utilizing Software as a Service (SaaS) applications or running externally hosted systems.

Associated Rates

Title Current Rate Current One Time Fee
Application Broker Fee

ITD will partner with agencies to broker the initial contract and ongoing vendor relationship for Software as a Service (SaaS). ITD will provide periodic security reviews, architecture reviews or annual meetings to discuss product roadmaps. A surcharge of 3.5% of the annual amount paid to the vendor providing Software as a Service (SaaS) will be charged by ITD. The fees will be billed monthly with a minimum of $10 per month and a maximum of $1,000 per month per application.