The end of another government fiscal year means another September, with all the craziness and excitement that it brings. As we’ve noted before, the government doles out an average of 40 percent of its annual IT expenditure in the final month of the fiscal year. In fact, given the relatively late arrival of this year’s appropriations, we might see that share go up this year. The conditions are ripe for a hectic four-week period, where we should all expect long hours to make sure every order gets filled.
Every program manager and acquisition professional in DOD has been leveraging the newest buzzword: OTA, which stands for Other Transaction Authority. OTAs have been in the acquisition arsenal for years, but Congress just recently relaxed rules and restrictions on their use, paving the way for OTAs to be the new hot method for rapid technology insertion and piloting. The Office of the Undersecretary of Acquisition and Sustainment recently has been working on an OTA handbook to help guide DOD acquisition professionals on the do’s and don’ts of this newly revitalized procurement method. It’s no surprise we’re starting to see the use of more and more OTAs.
The Continuous Diagnostic and Mitigation (CDM) program has gone through a lot of changes since it was first launched in 2013. And, each step of the way seems to make the program easier for companies to participate.
The program’s latest change allows companies to include Small Business to be part of CDM and play a bigger role in the program. As the program moves into its next phases, this could be a huge opportunity for companies that have not historically been able to participate.
The federal government spends upwards of $90 billion every year on IT. By June, a surprising amount of the budget remains unspent and unobligated. And every year around this time, technology vendors hope to cash in on the year-end money the federal government must spend by the end of the fiscal year — September 30.
Over the course of this series, we’ve covered a lot of the ins and outs of government contracting in the IT and COTS space.
Of course, the government buys products and services across the full range of the American economy, in addition to its role in monitoring, reporting on and regulating American industry. That led to the need for a classification system to bucket American companies based on the service or product they provide – the North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS).
I have worked with immixGroup’s suppliers and partners on a wide range of federal agencies and their IT requirements and buying patterns. And one department consistently stands out as the most commonly asked about: Health and Human Services (HHS).
Marketing to the federal buyer is all about knowing the right timing, methods and rules. The key to this is knowing where each opportunity is in the procurement cycle, who the primary influencers are in each phase and what information is most useful to each group.
Federal contracting officers are moving towards more openness in procurement, which is a step forward in the cumbersome federal procurement process, according to Michael Fischetti, executive director of the National Contract Management Association.
The advantage of FBO to industry is its extremely low barrier to entry. Anyone who is interested can sign up and view open market solicitations on FBO.
Source: What is FBO?
If the federal government were our 8th grade son or daughter, their cell phone would probably be taken away for the rest of the school year.