“Often, greater risk is involved in postponement than in making a wrong decision.”
Harry Hopf, a business consultant of the early 20th century, said these words, and many project management gurus probably have them hanging decoratively on their (now home) office walls.
This quote sums up our advice to agencies as we approach the next milestone guiding the governmentwide transition off GSA’s expiring Networx, Washington Interagency Telecommunications System 3 (WITS3), and Local Service Agreement contracts. In this post, we will explore why the transition should be at the top of everyone’s mind and what to expect from GSA as we close it out.
Time Is Running Out
By September 30, 2022, 100% of agencies’ telecom inventory must be off the expiring contracts and moved to GSA’s Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) program.
The transition, at this point in time, presents an opportunity for your agency to take control of its own destiny. Agencies have seen upwards of 30% savings over current costs and will benefit as they transition their services. They don’t have to worry about exponential cost increases or operational disruptions due to services left on expired contracts. They are free to implement their modernization plans, confident that the technologies and services they plan to introduce are secure and in-scope.
GSA Positions Agencies for a Successful Transition
Some agencies are still in the process of contractor selection. We understand that pandemic mission priorities have taken precedence and want to reaffirm our availability to support agency transitions. If your agency is struggling with the acquisition phase, GSA is here to help! Key services include:
- An inventory of complete services that need to be transitioned, including custom reports for your agency
- Technical, acquisition, and ordering assistance, plus automated tools to directly assist agencies with expediting EIS task orders
- GSA in-scope reviews of agency solicitations
- Regular outreach to agencies’ Integrated Transition Teams to monitor transition progress and provide guidance
Disconnect Before You’re Disconnected
March 31, 2021 is the next major transition milestone, when 50% of legacy services must be disconnected. At the current rate, the government is not on track to meet the September 30, 2022 milestone for completion. Reliance on expiring contracts risks disruption of critical services delivered to the public.
We made that fact plain in a January 27 letter to all our agency partners and outlined remedies for any agency in jeopardy of missing the milestone dates. In particular, we want agencies to be aware that as of October 1, 2021, GSA will no longer accept or process any exception requests for its expiring contracts.
This is all part of GSA’s plan for the Closeout of Transition to EIS, which details the phased approach we will employ to complete the disconnection of services from the expiring contracts. The objective is to get agencies to transition themselves, with our support, and avoid unilateral disconnection. For those left with services on expired contracts, there will be no viable way to reinstate them. GSA will be unable to help.
If your agency needs help with its transition, please contact the IT Customer Service Center at 855-482-4348, or send an email to ITCSC@gsa.gov. We encourage you to reach broadly across the CXO community in your agency. Include Chief Information, Acquisition, and Financial Officers in conversations on transition, financials, and risk.
For more resources on this topic, visit our EIS Transition page. Here you’ll find the GSA Transition Handbook, the GSA Project Plan for Closeout of Transition, the Transition Progress Tracking Report, and much more.
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