Transforming the Acquisition Process, Together
- Consider Progressive Methods to Stimulate Improvement – The government should continue to emphasize using cloud-based application tools and micro-services to advance and innovate Federal acquisitions. By considering opportunities at a smaller level, procurement teams can avoid the pitfalls that have plagued the acquisition process for years and help to provide a new way forward for Federal acquisitions
- Innovative Proposal Submissions – Use innovative ways to reduce the time for procurements such as brief white papers and an advisory down-select, or oral presentations for ‘technical proposals combined with a short price and past performance written submission. Consider shorter ‘jump start’ projects using micro-purchases to create the vision and direction before launching a larger procurement
Successful acquisition transformation requires frequent, constructive engagement with industry. Government employees can learn different methods and new technologies through this engagement that helps them build the skills they need to play a role in executing these innovative acquisition methods.
About Arc Aspicio
Arc Aspicio is a management, strategy, and technology consulting firm that takes a mission-oriented approach to complex client challenges. Focused on innovation, Arc Aspicio provides services in strategy, design, human capital, operations, analytics and visualization, technology and information sharing. The company is known for a strong, collaborative culture that values gratitude, provides leadership opportunities, and explores the future. Our teams take a human-centered approach to working with clients and are flexible and responsive within dynamic Government client environments where missions evolve and new priorities arise sometimes even daily. We thrive on these situations and promote continuous improvement and new ideas. And, #welovedogs! Follow us on Twitter @arcaspicio or learn more at www.arcaspicio.com.
As threats evolve, the Federal government acquisition process must keep pace and even get ahead. Federal acquisitions remain driven by systems that have been in place for decades. Challenges exist within the agencies, and between government and industry, in awarding contracts. The complex nature of acquisitions leads to higher costs, slow procurements, and sometimes minimal innovation.
Earlier this year, the White House created the Office of American Innovation (OIA) to help agencies embrace innovation as they face challenges. OIA focuses on modernizing technology across the government and using private sector ideas, models, and business practices to spur innovation in acquisition. Here are a few things OIA and the agencies themselves can consider:
- Make it Easy to Find the Right Resource – A digital IT acquisition training program for professionals to learn effective ways to apply modern IT procurement strategies already exists and OIA can build on it. The TechFAR Hub, which provides employees involved in the procurement process with tools and resources for modernizing acquisitions and fostering an environment that encourages frequent and constructive engagement with industry leaders is also a great existing tool. Promote existing tools and consider more in the future
- Pick the Best Evaluation Criteria – The General Services Administration (GSA) have experimented with an innovative idea in acquisition by having contracts where price is not an immediate consideration, and vendors are evaluated solely based on their capabilities, past performance, and expertise. The idea of an unpriced schedule is the kind of innovation that can modernize the acquisition process