EAGLE II - Streamlining Homeland Security Acquisitions for Information Technology

EAGLE II - Streamlining Homeland Security Acquisitions for Information Technology

These days, the homeland security mission moves fast… and acquisition lead times just do not support the speed to mission that agencies need to stay ahead of the threat. Acquiring information technology support services such as data analytics, cybersecurity, information sharing, and IT strategy and transformation must happen faster than ever before – yet bring more innovation and lower risk at the same time.

Contracting Officer Representatives (CORs) are at the nexus of selecting IT providers but must wade through the complications of acquisition strategies, a myriad of contract vehicles (DHS alone has more than 60), and an over-worked acquisition workforce.

One of the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) most flexible contract vehicles, and a cornerstone of the Department’s strategic sourcing strategy, is EAGLE II.  It is a multiple-award IDIQ contract vehicle, the preferred source of IT services for the majority of DHS’s enterprise infrastructure and initiatives across three functional categories (FC). 

FC2 includes Information Technology Program Support Services. It includes many types of projects: strategic planning, business process re-engineering (BPR)/ process improvement, IT transformation and strategy, enterprise architecture, data management, information sharing, information security, capital planning and investment control (CPIC), workforce planning, budget execution, performance management, training, enterprise resource management, organizational change management, and program management office (PMO) support. It is ideally suited for data analytics, cybersecurity, and information sharing – all major trends in IT.

 

The EAGLE II contract structure provides flexibility over time to meet mission and technology program schedules. Here are our lessons learned with EAGLE II:

  • To get a flexible solution, use a combination of Firm Fixed Price (FFP) contract line item numbers (CLINs) with optional Time and Materials CLINs for surge support or special projects
  • Providing a draft RFP prior to the release of the actual task order increases the quality of proposed solutions and allows providers to identify more complete staffing solutions
  • Documenting the evaluation criteria clearly in terms of the quality in technical approach, management approach, and past performance helps justify best value and allows you to select the right provider to supply the best mission results
  • Use true performance-based contracting… using a Statement of Objectives and asking contractors to provide a Performance Works Statement and metrics for a Quality Assurance Surveillance Plan… and, if you use FFP, include specific outcomes and deliverables and don’t treat it like T&M with a not-to-exceed
  • Conduct quick market research sessions in person, organized by the small business liaisons… you can do these in 20 minutes per company!
  • Include “Innovative ideas that save money and increase mission performance” as an evaluation criteria to incent unique and different ways to approach the work

EAGLE II offers you a set of pre-vetted, highly qualified prime contractors to deliver against a broad scope of IT requirements. Find out more information about EAGLE II .

Contributors

Tim Faulkner |

Tim is a Senior Manager for Arc Aspicio and has over 20 years of experience in public and private sector management consulting, focusing on commercial consulting for telecommunications companies (both wireline and wireless) before transitioning to government consulting ten years ago. For the past six years, his focus has been exclusively on the Department of Homeland Security, supporting programs for CBP, USCIS, TSA, ICE, and DHS HQ. His areas of expertise include program/ project management, strategic planning, knowledge management, capital planning and investment control, communications/ change management, and performance management. Tim graduated with a BA in American History and an MA in Early Modern European History from UVA.

Firefighters Show You Can Develop a Strategy While Fighting Fires

Firefighters Show You Can Develop a Strategy While Fighting Fires

“Employees at all levels are too busy ‘doing their jobs’ and ‘fighting fires’ to devote time or pay heed to strategic initiatives.” It’s a common complaint. Academic literature has confirmed that ‘firefighting’ takes up much of the manager’s job and offers extensive advice on how to stop fighting fires – and even how to suppress the urge to do so.

The SILab: An Invitation to Embrace Innovation

The SILab: An Invitation to Embrace Innovation

Government agencies and businesses must embrace innovation and strategic thinking to keep up with today’s changing society, rising demands, and complex problems. Encouraging organizations to fully adopt innovative thinking, however, is difficult. Organizations are often focused on their daily activities and have limited time to discover new approaches. In addition, employees often choose to stay with proven, mainstream solutions because they fear wasting resources or failure. 

Putting the Mission First in a Leader’s Agency Reform Plan

Putting the Mission First in a Leader’s Agency Reform Plan

Agency leaders have more than a little to do these days. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released guidance for implementing Executive Orders and Presidential Memoranda on Federal management and human capital. The Comprehensive Plan for Reforming the Federal Government and Reducing the Federal Civilian Workforce (M-17-22) directs agencies to create comprehensive plans to enhance mission focus, streamline operations, and improve workforce effectiveness and efficiency.

SharePoint: Unique Solutions for Homeland Security Partners

SharePoint: Unique Solutions for Homeland Security Partners

As information sharing has become more common across local, state, and federal agencies, homeland security partners need tools to manage this critical data. SharePoint has emerged as an information sharing tool that can assist emergency managers, law enforcement agencies, and others across the homeland security enterprise with the sharing of sensitive data with internal and external partners, quickly and securely.

Managing Change Using a Maturity Model

Managing Change Using a Maturity Model

The pace of change is accelerating. Government agencies, and their employees, must find new ways to support their stakeholders and manage internal operations in the face of changing mission expectations and potential budget cuts. Guiding the workforce through the change is messy and challenging and is essential to successful implementation of innovative ideas, technologies, and processes. 

Lost in Translation No Longer: Data Translators Bridge the Gap to the Mission

Lost in Translation No Longer: Data Translators Bridge the Gap to the Mission

Two main types of problems can make it difficult to make data-driven decisions: technical and cultural. Technical difficulties could include data that is messy, incomplete, or split between different departments or components. Cultural factors might include a resistance to change, an environment that favors trusting your instincts, or a belief that things are fine the way they are. 

How to Use Data to Drive Employee Engagement

How to Use Data to Drive Employee Engagement

When it comes to retaining your workforce, one feature correlates to 87% increases in retention and 57% increases in employee effectiveness. It is not compensation. It is employee engagement. Engagement measures an employee’s emotional commitment to an organization and willingness to use discretionary effort to achieve organizational goals. In other words, engaged employees strive to exceed the status quo. 

A Leader’s Most Influential Tool: Gratitude

A Leader’s Most Influential Tool: Gratitude

Gratitude is one of a great leader’s most powerful tools. It creates positive energy among an organization and the sense of appreciation permeates through the work the collective group is performing. Influential leaders listen to the needs of their colleagues and express gratitude. This helps them bring out the potential in the people they lead and inspire them to achieve what is most important to them and to the project.

The Design Era of Project Management

The Design Era of Project Management

Project Management best practices and methods continue to evolve to address the biggest challenges Government agencies face in today’s market. The increased use of Agile and the move from traditional waterfall methodologies is fairly common in Information Technologies. Projects use Agile methods such as Scrum or Kanban, and organizations invest a lot of time and effort to make this cultural shift on projects.

Data: Lost in Translation No More

Data: Lost in Translation No More

The rise of Big Data technologies and data-driven approaches of business functions has created a demand for data architects and scientists that is growing by as much as 12% annually. These highly technical resources and capabilities address part of the challenge, but organizations still struggle with how to effectively use the data they have to make timely and informed decisions to improve business and mission outcomes.