Friday, May 17, 2024

Federal News Network: Cloud computing: Ascending the procurement mountain

Over the course of the last week, the General Services Administration issued and received comments on a draft Ascend Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA). This BPA seeks to assist agencies in their efforts “to develop and implement enterprise-level cloud acquisition strategies through a modernized and simplified approach to meet their IT and cybersecurity requirements.” It is envisioned to provide baseline requirements for capabilities offered by commercial Cloud Service Providers (CSPs) that, currently, are not available under the GSA Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) or Governmentwide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs)…

As set forth in this blog commentary on a previous iteration of the BPA, which cited Coalition comments responding to GSA’s Request for Information (RFI) for its (GSA) Multiple Award Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) for commercial Software-As-A-Service (SaaS), Platform-As-A-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-As-A-Service (IaaS), members remain concerned that these efforts, collectively, prompt unnecessary duplication and increased costs. To the point, generic, government-wide multiple award BPAs create redundancy in administrative processes and contract terms, which, in turn, increase costs for contractors, agencies, and GSA because they neglect to identify two salient points required for contractors to submit responsive proposals: who is using the services, and how much will they use…

The identification of participating agencies and their estimated requirements is especially important in connection with commercial cloud services. These services utilized on an enterprise-wide basis by a given agency likely will have to be customized to meet the agency’s specific requirements, resulting in a large variation in the ultimate delivery format and construct of cloud service offerings provided across agencies. For this reason, leveraging the FAR 8.4 competitive task order process, which calls for the utilization of specific evaluation criteria associated with unique agency requirements, would provide a sound approach to supporting specific customer agency requirements. This approach affords commercial cloud contract holders the opportunity to propose custom solutions responsive to individual agency requirements, avoiding wasteful administrative activity associated with a generic BPA… Read the full article here.


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Jackie Gilbert
Jackie Gilbert
Jackie Gilbert is a Content Analyst for FedHealthIT and Author of 'Anything but COVID-19' on the Daily Take Newsletter for G2Xchange Health and FedCiv.

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