In February 2021, GSA announced the re-award of the 2nd Generation Information Technology (2GIT) Blanket Purchase Agreements (BPAs). During the five year period of performance of the BPAs, it is expected to result in an estimated buy in excess of $5.5 billion. BPAs are available through GSA Advantage!®, eBuy and Air Force Advantage!® and provide a streamlined process for procuring IT hardware and software commodities, ancillary supplies and installation services.
Over the course of two years, we’ve worked with the U.S. Air Force to better understand their IT procurement requirements and demonstrate the benefits of using GSA to build a next generation contract solution.
The fundamental scope of the 2GIT BPAs is to provide a total solution to meet the IT needs of the USAF, Department of Defense agencies, and other federal, state, local, regional and tribal governments.
The 2GIT BPAs offer pre-competed IT products through GSA Multiple Award Schedule North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes. The SINs covered in these BPAs are:
GSA has integrated supply chain risk management as a foundational part of 2GIT. This is a crucial component due to the paramount need to ensure that cybersecurity vulnerabilities associated with IT products are adequately addressed as they move through the vendor’s order and delivery process. Leveraging industry partners that execute solid enterprise supply chain risk management plans as part of a comprehensive Vendor Risk Assessment Program is critical to ensure processes and reporting are in place to reduce the risk of compromise throughout the supply chain, from original equipment manufacturers to distributors and resellers:
Hardware and software
System data/information from component substitution
The benefits of the 2GIT BPAs extend government-wide and align with current policies. We’ve incorporated category management principles such as the collection of prices paid data, the ability to track savings and reduction of duplicative contracts and administrative burden. Other benefits include:
Improved supply chain risk management and supplier risk management
Increase of authorized resellers of major original equipment manufacturers
Improved product availability via the FAStLane Mods process
Support for small business participation
Complimentary on-site and virtual customer support and training
The last months have been a whirlwind of activity for the new government-wide Information Technology Vendor Management Office (ITVMO). We not only chartered the ITVMO, but have started working with several partner agencies and IT acquisition experts from across government to identify existing resources that can assist agencies with their buying decisions. The ITVMO brings together the most critical players in the federal IT acquisition landscape to solve challenges agencies and vendors face when buying and selling IT products and solutions.
Launched in October 2020, the ITVMO is a government-wide effort to amplify the benefits of managing vendor engagement in the IT Category to make IT acquisitions faster and more cost effective. The ITVMO serves as a trusted independent advisor and advocate to help agencies buy common IT goods and services. As a one-stop shop, the ITVMO will leverage government-wide IT procurement data, conduct market research, and develop shared agency acquisition knowledge to support agencies’ buying decisions.
There are many programs and initiatives across government that are interested in improving how government buys IT. The ITVMO is unique in that it is a collaborative effort amongst partners in Category Management (CM) with the most critical IT acquisition Best in Class (BIC) contract vehicles and associated programs including:
The General Services Administration (GSA);
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA);
The National Institutes of Health (NIH);
The Department of Defense (DOD);
The White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP).
Through this collaboration, the ITVMO will advance the goals of IT Category Management (CM) to improve how the government buys common IT goods and services and enable the government to act more as a single entity by sharing best practices and acquisition intelligence as well as eliminating the unnecessary duplication and redundancy that exists between federal agencies.
What’s Happening & What’s Next
One of the central drivers of CM is to mature federal IT acquisitions so that the government acts more like a single buyer rather than many independent agencies. By creating a space where some of the biggest and most impactful federal IT acquisitions programs and initiatives can collaborate and solve shared problems, establishing the ITVMO is a major step toward that goal.
The ITVMO is chartered and led by an Executive Steering Committee (ESC) comprised of several agencies including those with the largest IT BIC vehicles. The ESC determines the strategic direction and project priorities for the ITVMO to solve problems for agencies and vendors alike.
To identify shared challenges and opportunities throughout government, the ITVMO surveyed hundreds of IT and acquisition experts including the Chief Information Officers Council (CIOC) and the Chief Acquisition Officers Council (CAOC) as well as several communities of practices. The ITVMO team also conducted listening sessions with industry groups. The data and feedback gathered from across government is driving the challenges the ITVMO seeks to address in the near future.
The ITVMO’s primary customers are the programs and offices responsible for making buying decisions at each agency, and the vendor community. On January 27th, the ITVMO hosted an Open House for agencies to provide an overview of the ITVMO’s mission and services, and to answer any questions from the community. More information about the ITVMO Open House, including a video recording of the event, is available to government employees.
Based on customer feedback, the ITVMO is working on several products and services that will be made available to agencies in the near future, including:
Continuing a Small Business Webinar Series developed in partnership with the IT Government-wide Category and the American Council for Technology and Industry Advisory Council Small Business Alliance so agencies and vendors can learn how GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service Multiple Award Schedules Program will allow agencies to more easily procure IT products and services from small businesses.
Vendor Profiles that provide agencies with pricing information, specific vendors’ terms and conditions, and best practices for negotiating with that vendor.
Deep Vendor Intelligence crowdsourced from IT acquisition experts from across the federal government participating in integrated project teams (IPTs).
A Technology Life Cycle Assessment to provide agencies with insights into buying emerging technology and updating existing systems and services to meet evolving needs.
A deep dive and review of current Cost Avoidance Methodologies used by IT BIC acquisitions vehicles. The ITVMO is working closely with GSA’s IT Category to provide recommendations on how to improve the accuracy and reliability of cost avoidance methodologies and the underlying contract data.
If any of the above interest you, we would love to connect with you. Please feel free to reach out to the ITVMO inbox at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The ITVMO recently launched the first of several IPTs made up of the federal government’s foremost experts in working and negotiating with specific IT vendors. The IPTs will produce recommendations and strategies that can be shared and leveraged throughout government.
On May 12, 2021, The ITVMO will also host an Industry Day intended for our industry and vendor partners to learn about the mission of the ITVMO and the best way to collaborate with the ITVMO and federal IT acquisitions staff.
Finally, the ITVMO will soon launch our website to share the ITVMO’s latest updates and activities, post relevant templates and resources, and direct users to the relevant information to meet their IT acquisition needs.
In 2019, two distinct working groups comprised of federal telecom professionals merged to form the Federal Mobility Group (FMG). Focused on the four pillars of agency mission enablement, 5G technology, mobility security, and acquisitions, the FMG’s purpose is to:
Share information to enable government adoption of secure mobile technologies supporting mission
Identify/Address member priorities (gaps/challenge areas)
Identify/Address Federal CIO Council and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) priorities
GSA is one of three FMG Chairs, supported by subject-driven working groups. GSA shares its FMG leadership role with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and has served the FMG since inception. The FMG’s 2020 agenda focused on supporting agencies’ pandemic related security and mobility challenges as well as delivering research on Mobile Security and 5G.
Working groups are the engines of the FMG – and while pandemic response was top of mind, the FMG working groups used 2020 to deepen exploration and discovery across many technical areas:
Mobility 101: Interested in how the federal government defines mobility? Need help understanding the existing acquisition options agencies can leverage to procure mobile technology? Watch the acquisition working group’s webinar highlighting available products and services.
5G Public Policy Guidance: Want to learn more about policies and regulations impacting the adoption of 5G? Read more about the accomplishments and work from the FMG on their site (PIV card required) where you can review the white paper published by the Mobile Network Infrastructure subgroup. Public facing news and deliverables can be found on the FMG page and News section of the Cio.gov site.
Engage, Explore, Educate: In addition to developing resources to support the mobile community, the FMG invites industry partners to share new technologies and discuss recent events and learning, ensuring the team benefits from industry best practices.
Looking Forward to 2021
The Federal Mobility Group has set a high bar for its 2021 deliverables. They include:
FY 21 & Beyond: FISMA Mobility Metrics Report
Integrated Data Collection Mobility Data Reporting/Analysis
International Travel Guidance For Mobile Devices
Mobile Security Ecosystem Whitepaper
On April 20, 2021 ATARC and the FMG will co-host an event showcasing the work of the team and discussing 5G and Mobile Security in government. Register here.
The Mobility team at GSA supports a growing number of digital tools and resources to position your program and contracting staff for long-term success. If your agency is interested in learning more about our suite of mobility offerings, GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule and Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) have everything from Wireless Carrier Services to Mobile Threat Defense to Internet of Things (IoT) solutions.
The FMG includes 200+ federal mobility SMEs and support contractors from 45 agencies and bureaus across the federal and technical spectrum. The group meets bi-weekly to discuss a variety of topics. Membership requires an active .gov or .mil address. To join the team, email email@example.com.