GSA puts IT modernization Centers of Excellence out to bid
- By Sara Friedman
The General Services Administration has started planning five IT modernization centers of excellence, releasing a request for quotations on staffing needs for the CoEs.
At a Dec. 14 industry day at the White House, GSA’s Technology Transformation Service announced the organization of the centers, which will be focused on IT infrastructure optimization, cloud adoption, customer experience, contact centers and service delivery analytics. The first agency to participate will be the Department of Agriculture.
The CoEs will provide agencies with consulting and engineering services to help improve service design and customer interactions. Each center of excellence has a different mission and objectives, but all are intended to "manage centralized, function-specific talent, solutions and acquisition vehicles," according to the solicitation. "Agencies have unique missions but the systems they build to deliver those missions rely on foundational capabilities that are not unique. The CoE teams will provide expert advice, consulting, development and support solution implementation."
The Cloud Adoption CoE will work to analyze current applications and systems used by agencies to provide recommendations for cloud migration efforts. Possibilities include working to balance "lift and shift" needs with the imperative to fix flaws before moving to full adoption and looking for innovations in security assessments.
The IT Infrastructure Optimization CoE will help integrate cloud computing and data center consolidation and optimization needs into targeted agency strategies. GSA is looking for infrastructure subject matter experts that can assist with data center planning activities, developing frameworks for end-of-state systems and supporting data migrations and conversions.
The Customer Experience CoE will work with agencies to improve their engagement strategies with possible multi-stakeholder meetings and service design to create cross-channel experiences.
The Contact Center CoE will work with subject matter experts to examine existing systems, processes, operations, data and technologies in order to make recommendations for modernization. Some possible research will look into robotic process automation, workforce management techniques and best practice and playbook publications.
The Service Delivery Analytics CoE is focused on measuring the improvement of outcomes for citizen engagement. Possible activities include process flow charting for service design blueprinting, interactive dashboards and integration and configuration of measurement instruments to track customer relationship management software, contact centers and websites.
Work to make the CoEs operational is expected take approximately three months, and the solicitation calls for full-time vendor staffing during that period, with a "mutually agreed upon work plan" to be defined after the start-up. Contracting officers from GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service will oversee work through monthly progress reports.
The RFQ was released through GSA’s eBuy tool on Dec. 20, with vendor responses due by Jan. 8. The RFQ was first reported by NextGov.
Sara Friedman is a reporter/producer for GCN, covering cloud, cybersecurity and a wide range of other public-sector IT topics.
Before joining GCN, Friedman was a reporter for Gambling Compliance, where she covered state issues related to casinos, lotteries and fantasy sports. She has also written for Communications Daily and Washington Internet Daily on state telecom and cloud computing. Friedman is a graduate of Ithaca College, where she studied journalism, politics and international communications.
Friedman can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow her on Twitter @SaraEFriedman.
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