Last Chance: Signing Deadline Approaches for Expiring Telecom Contracts Continuity of Service MOU

Posted by Laura Stanton
on August 23, 2022

In January, GSA decided it will invoke the Continuity of Service (CoS) clauses for expiring enterprise network and telecommunications contracts. This will allow agencies an additional year to either complete their transition to Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) or find another solution to prevent interruption of services.

Transition has been slow for many federal agencies. As of June 30, 2022, only 94 percent of the planned task orders for transition have been awarded. Also, 5.3 million of the nine million legacy services governmentwide are still in use. These services range from telephone lines to high bandwidth secure internet access.

We urge agencies to push toward completing 100 percent disconnection of services by September 30, 2022 and assess their risk of not completing transition by May 30, 2023. Those who need more time to transition must sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to be authorized to use the CoS period from June 1, 2023 to May 31, 2024.

Sign the MOU by September 30th

If an agency does not sign the MOU by September 30, 2022, GSA will remove the agency from the Networks Authorized User List (NAUL) for the expiring contracts. The contractors will begin the disconnect process as early as November 2022 and complete it no later than May 2023.

Agencies that want to take advantage of the CoS period can do so only under these conditions:

  • Agencies must sign a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with GSA by September 30, 2022: GSA has sent a copy of the MOU to all potentially impacted agencies. The MOU must be signed by the agency head, or their designee with delegated authority. If an agency’s transition team has not received a copy of the MOU, please contact GSA at eistcc.ta@gsa.gov.
  • On May 31, 2024 (the end of the 12-month CoS period), any services remaining active on the expiring contracts will be disconnected, according to the terms and conditions of their respective contracts. Services cannot be reinstated on those contracts.

If an agency will not complete transition before the CoS period ends, the agency must:

  • Identify the services that will be cut off when the CoS period ends;
  • Develop a contingency plan to maintain operation of those services on another contractual arrangement; and
  • Implement that contingency plan so when the contracts expire and the services are disconnected, the agency’s mission is not interrupted or otherwise negatively affected.

GSA Resources

If your agency is mid-transition, weigh the pros and cons of signing the MOU and make a risk-based decision appropriate for your agency.

GSA remains available to help you assess your transition risk and understand your acquisition options. We are holding monthly EIS Transition Office Hours and monthly Interagency EIS Transition Meetings, both of which act as a forum for agencies to share best practices and lessons learned and ask transition-related questions. For an invitation to these open forums, please email benjamin.todd@gsa.gov.

The legacy telecommunications contracts are expiring very soon. Do not delay in transitioning services and, if needed, signing the CoS MOU and conducting contingency planning.

GSA is and will continue to actively monitor agency progress toward stated EIS deadlines. If you need assistance, have additional data to share on the speed of your transition to EIS, or would like to meet with us, please contact your assigned GSA Solutions Broker.

For more information, visit gsa.gov/eistransition.

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8(a) STARS III Instrumental in Biden-Harris Equity in Procurement Vision

Posted by Laura Stanton
on August 9, 2022

President Biden has a vision for a more equitable and resilient federal procurement system, using federal contract spending to support the participation of small businesses in traditionally underserved communities in the federal marketplace. GSA is committed to doing our part to make that vision a reality.

Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility to the Core

GSA has worked hard to develop a portfolio to support small businesses from their formation as small 8(a) firms, to more mature small businesses, and finally unrestricted. These efforts help the Administration’s goals of increasing access and building a solid platform for success for a diverse spectrum of vendors across the federal marketplace.

What is so impressive is the robust community we’ve created on the newest vehicle. 8(a) STARS III has 1,110 highly qualified 8(a) contractors – that’s more than 20% of all of the entities in the 8(a) program, including dozens of contractors who are new entrants.

Equally impressive is the breadth of IT services offered to support virtually every form of IT modernization, including a wide range of state-of-the-art technologies.

If you need technology for information assurance or to protect from evolving threats, you can find it on 8(a) STARS III. If you need any form of Artificial Intelligence (AI) or Robotic Process Automation (RPA), you can find it on this contract. It’s a great testament to the talents and skills of the 8(a)/Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) community and a powerful reminder of how small businesses really are the driver of innovation in our economy.

Customer Experience Matters

We designed 8(a) STARS III based on extensive customer feedback to ensure it is responsive to agency needs. For example, a streamlined ordering experience means GSA offers free scope review services and market research for agencies who want it.

Agencies like the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) value this kind of customer experience, and as a result, they’ve been a truly meaningful partner in our 8(a) STARS journey for some time.

They adopted 8(a) STARS into their EAGLE Next Gen portfolio because of its ability to meet their evolving IT requirements. And of particular importance to DHS is 8(a) STARS III’s large pool of vetted industry partners who specialize in emerging technology.

8(a) STARS III also provides DHS access to hundreds of vetted companies with expertise in emerging technologies such as Quantum Computing, RPA, Technological Convergence, and Virtual Reality.

Since DHS adopted the 8(a) contracts (beginning with 8(a) STARS II in 2019) into their strategic sourcing portfolio, 8(a) STARS:

  • Accounts for 9% of all IT Services spend across the agency, and
  • Accounts for 13% of their total 8(a) spend.

Along with increased access to IT services vendors specializing in emerging technology and increased opportunities for proven, vetted 8(a) businesses, this partnership allows DHS to continue its strong commitment to the small business community while ensuring DHS is in alignment with recent executive orders and administrative priorities.

Another reason DHS values our partnership is that we provide them, and all of our customers, with many value-added services such as a dedicated program office for acquisition support, tools, templates, and complementary scope reviews.

Executive Director of the Strategic Solutions Office at DHS James Lewis, has stated that they “can achieve more mission for every dollar spent while maintaining a solid commitment to the small business community and leveraging strategic contracts like 8(a) STARS III.”

Where We Stand

To date, more than 217 task orders estimated at $691 million have been awarded to more than 135 industry partners on 8(a) STARS III. That includes more than 40 task order awards going to 8(a)/SDBs that are new to GSA.

I really couldn’t be more proud of the work my team has done to pull this contract together and build the relationships with customers and industry partners to make it so successful.

You can visit our website to learn more about 8(a) STARS III or use our IT Solutions Navigator to find the vehicle that’s right for you.

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C-SCRM Acquisition Community of Practice (ACoP) Interact Site

Posted by Laura Stanton
on June 30, 2022
Cyber-Supply Chain Risk Management (C-SCRM) Whole of Government logo.

Since the launch of the C-SCRM Acquisition Community of Practice (ACoP), GSA and CISA have been co-leading an effort to broaden the level of awareness and develop agency maturity in the areas of acquisitions, supply chain risk management, and cybersecurity across the Federal Government for information communication technology and services (ICTS).

Many federal departments and agencies have limited C-SCRM capabilities, resources, governance, guidance, and training; especially in the acquisition of ICTS. We need governmentwide collaboration with industry and the sharing of ideas, tools, guidance, and best practices for C-SCRM as part of the acquisition of ICTS.

Many don’t see the acquisition workforce as a key component of agencies’ cybersecurity teams. But federal procurement professionals have unique opportunities, through contracting, to ensure the safety and security of the federal government’s ICTS, help strengthen cybersecurity across networks, and prevent incidents like Solarwinds from occurring.

To increase C-SCRM awareness and adoption government-wide, the C-SCRM ACoP launched an online collaborative space for the federal government’s IT community and industry to share best practices, ideas, guidance, tools, and expertise needed to implement C-SCRM requirements. Working together as a community and sharing information will help us improve our cybersecurity posture across all levels of government.

The C-SCRM ACoP has hosted key events such as the C-SCRM Shark Tank event in collaboration with the American Council for Technology – Industry Advisory Council (ACT-IAC) where industry experts showcased innovative C-SCRM solutions to a government panel. The C-SCRM ACoP also plans to conduct a survey of industry to identify C-SCRM challenges and suggest best practices from industry’s perspective.

Additionally, the C-SCRM ACoP hosts monthly sessions open to federal employees and agency support staff. These sessions and events, held in collaboration with CISA, offer opportunities for knowledge sharing and cross collaboration focusing on supply chain risk awareness and advancements in cyber-acquisitions. Subject matter experts are ‘on hand’ not only providing information related to cybersecurity and acquisition integrity, but also best practices and lessons learned. 

Joining the C-SCRM ACoP helps:

  • Enhance the Federal Government’s cross-agency collaboration
  • Identify agencies’ strengths and capabilities in leading strategic C-SCRM objectives
  • Rapidly disseminate best business practices & outcomes
  • Learn from other agencies

To join the C-SCRM ACoP, email us at C-SCRM_ACoP@gsa.gov.

Visit the C-SCRM ACoP’s Interact site to be part of this collaborative journey. Follow ITC on Twitter and LinkedIn, and subscribe for blog updates.

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Marking the One-Year Anniversary of Executive Order 14028 “Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity”

Posted by Laura Stanton
on June 6, 2022

May 2022 marked one year since President Biden signed Executive Order (EO) 14028 – “Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity.” It directs sweeping changes to cybersecurity requirements and calls on federal agencies to address key issues critical to building a more resilient cybersecurity posture. The EO also requires federal agencies to take steps to implement a Zero Trust Architecture (ZTA) model to modernize and strengthen cybersecurity standards and detection.

Since May 12, 2021, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued additional guidance to support the mission of “Improving the Nation’s Cybersecurity.”

Timeline of Key Policy and Guidance Associated with the EO beginning on May 12, 2021 when the EO was signed through January 26, 2022.
Figure 1: Timeline of Key Policy and Guidance Associated with the EO

The associated OMB memos outline the steps required for agencies to better protect federal information systems, making them more secure and resilient. The requirements include implementation of:

  • Strict security controls on critical software,
  • Mature event detection and analysis capabilities, and
  • Endpoint data collection within networks to detect and hunt cyber threats.

Federal agencies also have new ways to obtain funding for the cybersecurity products and services needed to implement the EO’s requirements. Bolstering cybersecurity defenses is one of the Technology Modernization Fund (TMF)’s focus areas, and it’s funded three projects to support ZTA implementation. The President’s FY23 Budget request includes increased funding for federal agencies as they implement the EO’s priorities and a ZTA strategy. The request is the largest such increase in over 12 years.

Resources to help meet the EO requirements

There is no single technology, product, or service that can achieve the goals of implementing ZTA. Each agency’s journey and solution will be unique, and GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) is here to help.

The FAS Office of IT Category (ITC) has resources to help agencies, vendors, and acquisition professionals continue to work towards a mature ZTA and meet the Administration’s requirements.

Over the past year, GSA’s ITC has:

  • Participated in governmentwide working groups on Cybersecurity Supply Chain Risk Management (C-SCRM) and ZTA. To ensure GSA’s offerings are capable of delivering the products and services that support implementation of the EO’s requirements, subject matter experts (SMEs) participated in working groups led by the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).
  • Educated the acquisition workforce on EO 14028. GSA SMEs conducted multiple trainings and speaking engagements for IT and acquisition professionals on ZTA, C-SCRM, and the EO requirements. If your agency would like to schedule a session with GSA SMEs, reach out to the GSA National Account Manager dedicated to your agency.
  • Incorporated C-SCRM practices into GSA contract vehicles. To assist agencies with EO requirements to mitigate cyber risks in the Government’s IT supply chain, GSA continues to pursue efforts to ensure alignment with EO guidance.
  • Developed informational webpages and Buyer’s Guides to aid agencies navigating the EO requirements.

Other ways GSA can help

Whether your agency is small or large, GSA has solutions that can be tailored to your cybersecurity needs. In addition to the Buyer’s Guides, GSA offers multiple online tools to assist in planning a cybersecurity acquisition. 

  • IT Security Acquisition Planning Package (APP) provides common resources agencies can use to plan a cybersecurity acquisition, including:
    • Overviews of GSA IT Security offerings,
    • IT Security Statement of Work (SOW) and Request for Quote (RFQ) templates, and
    • GSA’s Market Research As a Service (MRAS) tool to identify potential vendor pools and suggested contract vehicles. 
  • GSA developed Buy.GSA.gov, which can help you:
    • Plan – Determine the documents you need, and find vendors and contracts. 
    • Develop Documents – Find sample documents and templates.
    • Research – Find products, services, and pricing data.
    • Purchase – Review buying methods and request submissions for quotations.
  • GSA, in partnership with the Federal Chief Information Officers Council, is developing a series of ZTA Playbooks to help agencies move from the conceptual planning phase to actual implementation of a zero trust security model. Agencies can expect a “base playbook,” followed by playbooks dedicated to the pillars of a mature ZTA.
  • GSA has Customer Service Directors specifically assigned to your agency by location. You can also find the National Account Manager dedicated to your agency. 
  • For cybersecurity SME support, contact the IT Security Subcategory at ITSecurityCM@gsa.gov.

What’s next

As the Federal government improves its efforts to better protect Federal information systems, expect additional OMB guidance and updates to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), driving the need for modification of contract language. GSA will keep you informed, communicating with you the major developments.

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Planet Earth – Keeping Us Grounded

Posted by Laura Stanton
on April 21, 2022

Looking toward Earth Day this year got me thinking about ITC’s efforts to promote a sustainable future. I’d like to share a few things we’ve done and what we’re working on.

One of the Biden-Harris Administration’s core goals is to put the United States on a path toward net-zero emissions, economywide, by no later than 2050

The federal government has a big role to play.

Reading the IT leaves

One trend that we’re seeing is the government relying more on “as-a-service” models for enterprise IT infrastructure. 

Another trend is buying less government-owned physical hardware. Agencies are getting what they need through industry and letting industry manage everything on the backend. 

We see this clearly reflected in our hardware buying data.

Relying more on industry-provided infrastructure through the cloud and other “as-a-service” solutions shrinks the government data centers’ overall footprint. This move reduces the government’s consumption of raw materials and energy. 

We’re seeing this trend across the government. Of course, data centers are just one piece of the IT sustainability puzzle. But it’s encouraging to see those numbers going down.

Looking to the horizon

So what is ITC doing specifically? Well, a lot!

  • In our Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) contract, we’ve built sustainability criteria into the contract. Section G.12 — Requirements for Climate Change Adaptation, Sustainability and Green Initiatives support environmental sustainability practices through using energy-efficient, virtual, and streamlined technology that facilitates agile and expansive network communications. 
  • Complex Commercial Satellite Communications (COMSATCOM) Solutions (CS3) Section C.2.1.5 — Climate Change Risk and Mitigation has a contract deliverable to prepare and update as needed a corporate climate risk management plan. This plan identifies and addresses mitigating climate change risks to land-based equipment and services associated with the satellite communication services that CS3 provides.
  • Our Governmentwide Strategic Solutions (GSS) for desktops and laptops has a mandatory Electronic Product Assessment Tool (EPEAT) Governmentwide Program. This comes from OMB Memo M-16-02, which provides standard configurations and minimum requirements for desktops, laptops, and tablets. The offering mandates EPEAT for all end-user devices and optional equipment (i.e., monitors) to meet the standard and be sold through the program.
  • The Alliant 2 Governmentwide Acquisition Contract is another great example of how the federal government leads in environmental sustainability. Alliant 2 requires greenhouse gas emissions (GEG) disclosures and reduction targets from its contractor pool. It is a contractual deliverable. We intend to continue this practice on Alliant 3.
  • With Defense Enterprise Office Solution (DEOS), GSA is helping the DoD leverage enterprise commercial cloud environment to enable cross-department collaboration while reducing the physical footprint of on-premise infrastructure.
  • Looking to the future, we’re working hard on the Cloud Marketplace Blanket Purchase Agreement, a vehicle that will enable agencies to further their cloud adoption strategies by offering common cloud capabilities more easily.

We know that moving to the cloud can reduce an agency’s footprint, but we’re taking that even further. We’re in the early stages of writing in environmental directives related to carbon pollution-free energy for the data centers that will provide those cloud capabilities: geothermal, hydroelectric, hydrokinetic, nuclear, solar, wind, and the like. (I have solar panels at home and I’m also a big fan of wind farms)

Also in the works is Polaris, our small business-focused contract. We’ve outlined two areas of sustainability in the Polaris RFPs:

  1. Products purchased from Polaris are at the EPEAT Bronze Level, and 
  2. Polaris contractors can provide their Sustainable Practices and Impact Statement (i.e., GHG disclosures).

How do we move forward? We planet.

We’ve got a lot yet to do to ensure we meet the president’s goals on sustainability. We’re working hard toward that aim.

As I reflect on Earth Day this year, I’m proud of the important strides we’re making to help agencies buy more sustainable IT products and we continue to seek opportunities to become more sustainable.

Learn more about our solutions or use our IT Solutions Navigator to find the vehicle that’s right for you.

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Improving Polaris with Small Business Feedback

Posted by Laura Stanton
on April 20, 2022

Polaris — GSA’s future small business Governmentwide Acquisition Contract (GWAC) of record — is meant to provide agencies with a trusted and innovative contract vehicle designed to deliver complex IT services from the most highly skilled, experienced, and capable small businesses across multiple socioeconomic pools.

After releasing the final RFPs for the small business and women-owned small business pools in March 2022, we received thoughtful feedback from our industry partners in the small business community. We truly appreciate it.

We’re listening

As a result of the feedback we received, we’re assessing whether any changes to those RFPs are necessary. While we assess, we announced that we’re temporarily pausing the RFPs until further notice and will issue a new extended proposal due date along with any amendments. 

Offerors are encouraged to pause proposal activities until this assessment is completed. During this pause, the Polaris Submission Portal will not be open.

I want to emphasize that we very much appreciate industry’s feedback during this time. 

Built for an inclusive future

Polaris is designed to meet the needs of agencies buying complex IT services by

  • establishing pools that represent the broad ecosystem of small businesses.
  • including diverse providers that are proven capable of delivering exceptional results.

Our job is to take a thoughtful and managed approach to having a range of small businesses available to federal agencies through Polaris.

While we consider feedback and questions received from the RFPs, please continue to monitor SAM.gov for the latest Polaris news and information.

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ICYMI: ITC Activating Continuity of Service for Telecom Contracts

Posted by Laura Stanton
on April 19, 2022

In case you missed it, we are invoking the continuity of service (CoS) clause for these expiring enterprise network and telecommunications contracts: 

  • Networx
  • Local Service Contracts
  • Washington Interagency Telecommunications System (WITS) 3

This gives agencies the opportunity to sign on for an additional 12 months of service. During this time, agencies must either complete their transition to Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions or find another solution to prevent interruption of services. 

Invoking the CoS clause helps reduce the risks associated with not completing transition by the original May 31, 2023 deadline. It also provides more time for agencies to address challenges resulting from delayed task order awards, supply chain disruptions caused by the pandemic, and other important priorities.

The transition to EIS has significant governmentwide cybersecurity, mission, operational, and financial implications. Agencies that don’t move their services before the CoS period ends could face: 

  • Interruption of critical public services.
  • Increased cyber vulnerabilities.
  • Failure to carry out their missions.

More time to complete transition

GSA awarded EIS in 2017 to replace these expiring contracts, beginning a period of transition. Many federal agencies aren’t on track to complete their transition to EIS before the May 2023 expiration.

As of February 28, 2022, only 89% of the planned task orders for transition have been awarded. Also, 45% of the nine million services governmentwide (like telephone lines and high bandwidth secure internet access) are still in use. 

What this means for agencies

Agencies that want to take advantage of the CoS period can do so only if:

  • The agency signs a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with GSA by September 30, 2022
  • The MOU is signed by the agency head, or follows agency delegation of authority.
  • The designee is accountable for Chief Information Officer (CIO), Chief Acquisition Officer (CAO), and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) functions. 

At the end of the 12-month CoS period (May 31, 2024), any services remaining active on the expiring contracts will be disconnected according to the terms and conditions of their respective contracts. They cannot be reinstated on those contracts. This will occur at the contract level, not on the agencies’ task orders.

If an agency doesn’t transition before the exercised option or CoS period ends, the agency must:

  • Identify the services that will be cut off when the CoS period ends.
  • Develop a contingency plan to maintain operation of those services on another contractual arrangement. 
  • Implement the contingency plan to ensure mission isn’t disrupted when the contracts expire and services are disconnected.

If an agency does not sign the MOU, GSA will remove the agency from the Networks Authorized User List (NAUL) for the expiring contracts in October 2022. Contractors will then begin the disconnect process as early as November 2022 and complete it no later than May 2023.

What this means for our industry partners

As agency transition rates increase, so will the demand on industry partners to implement task orders and execute disconnects quickly. 

We value our industry partners and will work closely together as we execute contractual actions over the next year. We’ll also look to our partners to continue supporting our agency customers as they

  • Expedite EIS orders.
  • Explore other options for maintaining service on another contractual arrangement.
  • Reconcile records for services that are being disconnected.

Next steps

If your agency is mid-transition, weigh the pros and cons of signing the MOU and make a risk-based decision appropriate for your agency. We’re here to help you assess your transition risk and understand your acquisition options.

Agencies with services on the expiring contracts should expect a message from GSA in May 2022 including the MOU. If you need more information or would like to meet, please contact your assigned GSA Solutions Broker.

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FAS Commercial Platforms Initiative

Posted by Laura Stanton
on March 10, 2022

I’ve had the pleasure of being involved with the Commercial Platforms marketplace initiative since its inception. To make it easier for federal agencies make routine commercial product purchases, we partnered with multiple online platforms to modernize the buying experience. Through these partnerships we have made significant progress, and I’m excited to share more details on where the program is headed.

Program update

The Commercial Platforms program launched in August 2020 with four initial agencies and approximately 350 cardholders who could log in and purchase from any of our three participating platforms. I’m happy to report that agency interest is very strong, and the program has grown to over 20 participating agencies and over 40,000 total eligible cardholders.

The Commercial Platforms team actively works with the platforms to identify ways to support administration priorities in the areas of:

  • Supply Chain Risk Management (SCRM), 
  • Green Products, 
  • Small Business, 
  • Made in America, and 
  • Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Accessibility.

There is a continued emphasis on customer experience and direct feedback from buyers and program managers to better understand how the program can improve. Check out the new Commercial Platforms infographic for more FY21 highlights. 

Leadership changes

I’m pleased to share that GSA’s Northeast and Caribbean Regional Commissioner Jeff Lau is the new Executive Sponsor of the Commercial Platforms program. I will continue to provide guidance and support in a consultative role, but Jeff will manage the team and help shape the future of the program. 

Jeff recently shared that he sees “a great deal of potential and opportunity within this program to modernize and streamline routine commercial buying. I am excited about growing the program and broadening the number of platforms participating in future contracts. This will be a significant focus area as part of my leadership.”

Future contracts

Work is now underway on the next acquisition for the Commercial Platforms program, with existing contracts in place until June 2023. The team released a Request for Information (RFI) that asks for feedback from industry stakeholders on requirements and capabilities to support future program contracts.

As the market and our understanding of the e-commerce landscape evolves, buyer feedback will continue to play a significant role. The buyer’s experience is emerging as the top priority area, and we will keep learning from industry’s insights, feedback, and commercial practices.

To access the RFI, please visit and subscribe to the GSA Interact Commercial Platforms group. Visit www.gsa.gov/commercialplatforms for the latest on the Commercial Platforms program.

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Wireless Mobility Solutions Training: Bringing the Experts to You

Posted by Laura Stanton
on February 23, 2022

Today, industry and government alike are supporting flexible work models like remote work, in-office work, and hybrid environments. Government leaders are embracing this trend, steadily moving their workforces toward mobility solutions.

As wireless networks expand and speeds increase with 4G LTE and 5G, we expect this “work from anywhere” trend to continue. GSA was an early adopter of the hybrid work model and understands the foundational importance of wireless solutions in serving the American public. Through experience, we learned to work through the hows and whys of integrating 5G into our IT portfolio. We stand ready to support fellow hybrid agencies to ensure their workforces have the devices, plans, and security to do the same. 

To help you find your agency’s next cost-effective, modern wireless solution on GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule, our mobility acquisition experts created a new Wireless Mobility Webinar.  

Wireless Mobility Solutions on GSA Schedule

We’ve enhanced our Wireless Mobility Solutions to showcase 11 different subcategories of mobility solutions that benefit both industry and government purchasers. This update is not just about wireless devices and accompanying phone plans but also includes:

  • Mobile security: Mobile Threat Protection and Mobile App Vetting services give you baseline security with real time threat detection and scanning software. 
  • Mobile administration and management solutions: Telecom Expense Management Services (TEMS) and Mobility-as-a-Service solutions can help with inventory management, cost control, reporting, trouble ticketing and the distribution of wireless devices.
  • Mobility-related Internet of Things (IoT) component infrastructure: This technology allows you to design and operate a system of devices.

ITC’s wireless solutions portfolio also includes our Best-In-Class Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions. Through EIS, you can integrate your mobility requirements with your enterprise network in one unified order.

We strive to offer the breadth and variety of modern solutions you expect from the commercial mobility market, and add new service providers and solutions regularly. If you can’t find the service or industry partner you’re looking for or need additional support, let us know at wireless@gsa.gov.

Don’t forget! If you’re a Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative Wireless BPA user, your task orders will expire between now and November of 2023. If you need help with your transition, check out this FSSI Wireless transition training on our IT Acquisition University. ITAU offers lots of great government-only content, including webinars like “How to Equip the Federal Workforce in Today’s Telework Environment” and “How to Use TEMS and Mobility-as-a-Service.”

Get involved

Join the more than 250 program and contract personnel across government who make up the Federal Mobility Group. The FMG meets biweekly to discuss research, innovation, industry engagement, and events. Recent meetings showcased how government agencies are leveraging 4G/5G technologies to further their mobility missions, including the development of autonomous vehicles and smart warehouses. There’s even a working group specifically focused on 5G. Government employees with a .gov or .mil email address can contact fmg@gsa.gov to join.

Coming up

We’re hosting a virtual event on March 16, 2022 that will feature GSA expert discussions on Zero-Trust, cloud computing, and the use of emerging technology in today’s hybrid workplace. Register now for Securing Next-Generation Hybrid Work Environments.

Finally, we’d like to welcome back our Mobility program manager Christian Williams, who has been serving on active duty for the last year. We’re proud to have many veterans working at GSA and greatly appreciate their service to our country. Welcome back, Christian!

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Improving Acquisition Governmentwide: IT and Professional Services

Posted by Laura Stanton
on February 17, 2022

It’s not often that you hear from both the Information Technology Category and Professional Services and Human Capital Categories on this blog, but we’re excited to share some updates about how our portfolios are collaborating to improve governmentwide services acquisition. For this post we’re joined by Sheri Meadema, acting assistant commissioner of GSA’s Office of Professional Services and Human Capital Categories.

ITC and PSHC have always focused on developing and delivering contractual approaches that meet the expressed, current, and future needs of our customer agencies. We set up flexible solutions so industry has a low-friction experience when working with the government. Our job is to help our customers by: 

  • Reaching the most qualified and experienced suppliers in various socioeconomic categories. 
  • Accessing an acquisition channel that is designed to deliver exactly what agencies need and how they need to buy it.
  • Complying with evolving federal regulations.
  • Reducing the complexity and risk associated with services acquisition to the maximum extent possible.

What’s new

This year we are taking our partnership a step further through a new focus area called the Services Marketplace. ITC and PSHC are working together to align how we roll out new contracts and tools to support buyers and suppliers of services. 

Along with the leaders of GSA’s services contracts, we are working together to find enterprise-level solutions. We have three primary goals:

  • Rationalize, align and expand GSA’s contract offerings.
  • Improve FAS’s market research and buying tools. 
  • Improve the data and reporting systems used in support of our acquisition programs

What will this look like for our customers and industry partners? For industry, we envision a future with standardized engagement and solicitation processes regardless of the type of services you’re providing. We will focus on using a consistent set of best practices and tools when possible for both IT and professional services for solicitations, evaluation, negotiations, award, and contract management.

For our customers, we want to deliver a consistent, exceptional customer experience that makes it easier to get successful outcomes when compared to open market procurements. A customer agency buying services from GSA should be able to access familiar processes and have access to the right industry base, best-in-class contracts, effective and efficient tools, and support resources.

What we’re working on

Under the umbrella of the Services Marketplace, we are building the next generation of contracts, including the Services MAC, Polaris, and the follow-on to Alliant 2. 

  • ITC recently awarded the 8(a) STARS III Governmentwide Acquisition Contract, a small business set-aside, Best-in-Class GWAC. Through 8(a) STARS III, agencies can access award-winning 8(a) firms for emerging technologies and Outside Continental United States support via an established contract vehicle, saving time and taxpayer money over open-market methods.
  • Development of the next generation small business IT GWAC Polaris is well underway. The request for proposal for the new Polaris small business IT contract is expected in February 2022. Once fully awarded, Polaris will complete GSA’s GWAC contract portfolio by enabling federal agencies to set-aside IT task orders to small business, women-owned small business, service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and businesses located in HUBZones. 
  • With the OASIS ordering period ending in 2024, PSHC is making significant progress on a new Services Multi-Agency Contract to support federal agencies’ procurement requirements for services, making essential improvements and building on the program’s success. 
  • Work also continues on improving our Multiple Award Schedule service offerings in Phase 3 of the consolidation. Contractors with multiple contracts will consolidate down to one, which translates into fewer overall contracts for the acquisition workforce — and industry partners — to manage. It will also make it easier for agencies to find the vendors to meet their mission requirements.

We’ve also started standardizing the scope review process and created a digital tool/portal so customers can submit their scope review requests. This will allow for better tracking, management, and coordination across portfolios, as well as create a single customer experience. PSHC has already created a pilot single intake form and we are working to integrate that across other portfolios. 

In the coming months, we’ll launch a single Delegation of Procurement Authority training for OASIS and Human Capital and Training Solutions and a single on-demand ITC DPA, which combines 8(a) STARS III, VETS 2, and Alliant 2 to simplify the customer experience. We’ve also started the discovery phase for an order management tool for all services task orders. This will allow for better solicitation development, tracking, and task order management on GSA contracts. 

We look forward to continued input from customers and industry partners to create consistency as we build the next generation of contracts, improve market research and buying tools, and enhance data and reports systems for governmentwide services acquisition.

Contact us

If you’re interested in learning more about any of our contracts, send us a note!

Join the Small Business GWAC Community of Interest here to follow 8(a) STARS III and Polaris updates: https://interact.gsa.gov/group/small-business-gwac-community-interest.

Join the Professional Services Community here to follow news on the Services MAC: https://interact.gsa.gov/groups/professionalservicescategory.

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