This Week in Federal Contracting – November 27, 2017

This Week in Federal Contracting – November 27, 2017

In this week’s Federal Contracting News Roundup, we are looking at:

  • How the GSA is leveraging blockchain for Schedule 70 IT program vendors
  • Management challenges that await the GSA as a result of the Alliant 2 Contract
  • How to spot and stop contract bloat
  • Amazon Web Services’ new AWS Secret Region

Below are some recent headlines of which the federal contracting community should be aware:

GSA experimenting with blockchain to cut contracting time

In order to make it easier for vendors on the Schedule 70 IT program to establish contracts through automation, the General Services Administration (GSA) is looking into blockchain technology. A recent article on Federal News Radio shared insights from Jose Arrieta, director of contract operations for the Schedule 70 IT program.

Federal News Radio reported that, “Arrieta and his team studied the business process of Schedule 70 contracts — what vendors had to go through to get the contracts established — and identified the two longest processes in what Arrieta called the ‘optimal path’ — financial analysis of the company and the pre-negotiation memorandum. They then instituted blockchain by putting everything in a distributed ledger and redesigned the user interfaces so that industry only has to enter the information once instead of logging into multiple systems, and ran microservices to automate the processes.”

Read the whole story here.

$50B Alliant 2 brings big management challenges

In a recent article, Mark Rockwell at FCW explained major management challenges that face the GSA in their recent Alliant 2 contract, the government-wide acquisition contract for IT services and service-based solutions.

Rockwell reported, “With so many contractors involved, experts told FCW, GSA, federal agencies and contractors will have to work to insure the GWAC is used effectively.” With such a massive contract size and over 100 contractors on the job, strong guidance from the GSA will be crucial.

Read the whole story here.

How to fight big contract bloat

Robin Camarote and Chris Cairns reported in a recent article on Federal News Radio some of the reasoning behind bloated contracts and why it can sometimes feel needless to hire a management consultant. They stated, “Management consultants are presented with these huge, bloated contracts and find that they frequently can’t deliver every little detail of the job.”

They go on to explain why smaller, more specific contract requests keep all parties involved laser-focused on the actual task at hand, while promising stronger ROI numbers.

Read the whole story here. 

Classified cloud now an option for federal agencies

Amazon Web Services is now offering an AWS Secret Region for federal agencies’ classified material. This development is sure to make cloud migration and adoption considerably more appealing to the public sector.

Sara Friedman of FCW reported that, “All 17 IC agencies will be able to run classified workloads up to the secret level on the new AWS Secret Region through the CIA’s Commercial Cloud Services contract with AWS.”

Read the whole story here.