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Trump Promotes Technology Management for Federal IT Acquisitions

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By John K. Higgins

28 June 2018 09:51 PT

Vendors seeking to break through the world's largest customer of information technology – the US government – should keep a close eye on the ever-changing contract landscape. Federal IT spending now stands at more than 90 billion US dollars per year.

One of the recent changes brought by the Trump administration to the management of federal IT contracts relates to the use of management of technology companies to improve the acquisition process of TI.

The White House Office of Management and Budget and the General Service Administration invited IT providers to provide the government with feedback on the productive measures that federal agencies can take to adopt the TBM. The OMB-GSA partnership is seeking information from the industry on the following points:

  • software solutions that efficiently group and analyze data across the entire federal enterprise; and
  • services that support the preparation and adoption of standard taxonomies in large organizations to facilitate the implementation of TBM.

IT Service Providers have until July 9 to submit their first TBM Capacity Statements to the GSA. GSA will then sponsor two "Reverse Industry Days" during which suppliers will be able to present their capabilities and submit their responses to a government inquiry, or RFI, on the appropriate use of the TBM.

The GSA reserves the right to select the combination of participants for the inverted industry days scheduled for July 27th and July 30th. Suppliers who do not participate in the days of the industry can always bid for contracts related to TBM.

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Earnings from the previous administration

"GSA has been one of the first federal agencies to implement the TBM and is pleased to co-lead this effort to increase accountability and transparency of data across the government through the implementation of the TBM." the President's Management Program, "said Emily Murphy.

"Increased transparency of IT spending will enable federal leaders to make informed, evidence-based decisions and increase accountability to taxpayers when they invest the necessary funds in the IT solutions needed," he said. -she adds.

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The recent GSA-OMB information request builds on federal TBM efforts initiated in the Obama administration. The Council of Chief Information Officers of the federal government currently has a TBM component. The Trump administration has focused on the use of the approach in the 2019 federal budget with an allocation proposal of $ 1.5 million to create a section TBM within the CAMO.

TBM aims to improve the transparency of IT costs by tailoring successful private sector initiatives for government purposes, according to the CIO Council. TBM provides a standard for categorizing IT costs, technologies, resources, applications and services, with the goal of informing data-driven decision-making around a smart IT investment.

More than one-third of federal IT spending has been grouped under the category of "other" rather than a particular category of IT, in a recent government analysis of investment data. The need for greater clarity on IT investments has sparked interest for the TBM, which promises more efficient use of technology, better accountability and better IT acquisition processes .

Lack of specificity "makes it difficult to plan federal investments and shows the public whether the government is spending public money effectively to drive the large-scale change needed to improve business transformation and services to citizens," states the President Agenda. The PMA is calling for the adoption of TBM at the government level by 2022.

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Potential for IT providers

Suppliers could reap several benefits from the TBM initiative. If the use of TBM improves the way federal organizations acquire and manage IT, all providers will benefit from marketing their equipment, software or services to the government.

In addition, suppliers with specific TBM capabilities could obtain contracts tailored to the implementation of TBM. According to the GSA RFI, federal agencies may offer contracting opportunities for the adoption of TBM resources.

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"Currently, we are in the market research phase to refine government requirements and determine how the industry can meet the needs of the government," said Jonathan Kraden, Acting Deputy Administrator of the Office of Policy Government of the GSA. ]

"Once our research is complete, we will provide more information," he told the E-Commerce Times.

"Although we can not assume that this will turn into a contractual opportunity, I am inclined to believe that this will be the case," said Deniece Peterson, director of federal market analysis at Deltek.

"GSA plays an important role in supporting key aspects of the President's management agenda, particularly when it comes to providing expertise in IT modernization and eradicating unnecessary expenses, "she told the E-Commerce Times. ]

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"In the first case, GSA issued five contracts for the establishment of its Centers of Excellence for Information Technology Modernization – a better computer budget analysis to standardize reports and facilitate identification of unnecessary expenses. "said Peterson.

Featured software and services

The general scope of the capabilities of vendors that explore GSA and OMB includes software solutions capable of aggregating and analyzing data efficiently within the federal enterprise and the US. services that facilitate the preparation and adoption of standard taxonomies in large organizations.

An example of RFI's specific capability for software solutions is an explanation of how an IT vendor has used its software solution for publicly available public data sources to analyze the different levels of software. the TBM taxonomy.

Another sought-after software capability is a description of the challenges, gaps and benefits of using government-wide data sources for the full capture of federal IT spending at the different levels of the TBM methodology.

In terms of IT services, GSA and OMB asked vendors to describe how a company's services could help federal agencies prepare and implement a standard data taxonomy. They also asked for recommendations on what the federal government should do regarding the best way to acquire services related to TBM objectives.

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"The TBM provides two elements that I believe are essential for improving IT spending management: more granularity in the types of expenditures and standardization of reporting," Peterson noted. "They pave the way for a better understanding of current spending and allow comparisons between apples and apples, within and between agencies."

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The OMB has launched a program to guide federal agencies in the transition to TBM in a phased approach, and the agencies' ability to meet the requirements will rely heavily on the collection, standardization, and analysis of different sources of data. IT management, she said.

"Once they're on this framework, it will be easier to identify gaps in IT needs to help inform acquisition decisions," Peterson said. "It will also be easier to identify areas of duplicative spending that can be eliminated, so TBM, like previous policies requiring a review of computer asset inventories, could be a double-edged sword."

The original RFI notice with complete IT technical requirements has been published on
The Internet portal of Federal Business Opportunities earlier this month. GSA drove an hour
virtual orientation to the inquiry on Tuesday.

John K. Higgins has been a journalist with the ECT News Network since 2009. His main areas of interest are American government technology issues such as computer contracts, cybersecurity, privacy, cloud technology, big data and e-commerce regulation. As a freelance journalist and professional writer, he has written for many publications, including
The Body Report and Business Week .
Email John.


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