Government contractors may protest an award for all sorts of reasons, but not every reason is strong enough to sustain a protest on its own. One government contractor learned this the hard, and not inexpensive way, when first filing a protest at the Court of Federal Claims (COFC) and, when losing at that level, appealing to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit Read more
GSA has issued an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rule Making (ANPR) seeking input on ways to reduce the use of one-use plastics in the acquisition cycle. This includes plastic packaging that comes as part of the protection for many products. While there has apparently been some movement in the commercial market in this area, it is unclear to what extent these changes Read more
The General Services Administration continues to work on acquisition and IT management projects, even as many head to the beach or buckle in for the last two months of the fiscal year. Here are three things the agency is working on that made the news this week:
1. Fine-Tuning the Ascend Cloud RFP: GSA sent out a new draft this week for the Ascend cloud procurement, a project that could channel as much as $5 billion in cloud acquisitions. Contractors have a chance to comment on the draft and help shape the procurement.
2. Promoting the Technology Modernization Fund in Congress: The Technology Modernization Fund is a key revenue source for agencies seeking to upgrade outdated tech solutions. More recent discussions have been about using the fund to improve various customer experience capabilities. Administrator Robin Carnahan met with House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and other House leaders this week to promote the program’s success and seek House assistance in ensuring that the Fund continues to have a viable amount of funding in FY’23. This is important leadership on a program of interest to contractors and their customers.
3. Staffing Up the CIO’s Office: GSA CIO Dave Shive has recently added 25 new tech hires to his office and another 40 are said to be on the way. Key positions being filled include DevSecOps engineers, designers, product managers, and cloud engineers. The additions will definitely change how contractors support the CIO’s office and could give GSA the ability to work with other agencies who need help in these areas. GSA continues to move on important IT and acquisition projects. Look for the second round of Polaris RFP’s in September.
Contractors can begin voluntary Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification assessments next month even in the absence of a final rule on what the exact standards will be. The voluntary assessments will be conducted under the Defense Department’s Joint Surveillance Program and will result in companies’ receiving CMMC Level Two accreditation once the requirements become effective. Level Three was believed to be the minimum level needed to work as a prime Read more
Contractors are busy pursuing year-end business right now, but one thing they shouldn’t forget in their tool kit is the ability to protest. Contractors should always ensure that their rights and ability to compete fairly are protected, no matter whether it’s August or April. While frivolous protests may, indeed, harm a customer relationship, most federal officials know that contractors may protest if there’s a reason. Feds often build time for protests into their acquisition cycle in anticipation of protests, especially on large projects. Knowing what and Read more