Many of the internal IT systems essential to the efficient running of the Federal Acquisition Service are outdated.  Now, those systems – some of which date back to at least the 1970’s – may be slated for improvement under new FAS Commissioner Alan Thomas.  Thomas has said that upgrading these systems is a top priority.  This could equal opportunities for contractors that can work with FAS on upgrades and/or new systems.  In addition, Thomas wants to automate certain repetitive contract functions to reduce the amount of paperwork Schedule contractors must submit to GSA as part of contract modification and management.  The intent to is make life easier for both contractors and GSA contracting officers.  The new Commissioner is also striving to maintain open lines of communication with industry and is keenly aware of many concern areas.  Among possible innovative approaches being considered is the creation of a non-priced Schedule pilot.  Legislative authority is required for such an action, but GSA may, indeed, seek such approval.  Thomas seems to have the energy and awareness to accomplish what FAS must do to drive business and maintain good supplier relationships.