This edition of the Weekly Debrief includes more coverage of the JEDI saga, GSA fielding concerns with beta.SAM.gov, GSA EIS vendor advice, VA's financial system overhaul, and that Congress thinks federal departments need to coordinate their artificial intelligence efforts.
"Pentagon leaders have hungered for years to do more business with innovative technology companies that were scared off by the Defense Department’s labyrinthine acquisition processes. But the so-called JEDI contract to build a global general-purpose cloud for the military was going to be different. The building was going to move smartly to award a contract and make it straightforward and relatively simple."
"Amazon Web Services, silent for so long during the competition for the multibillion-dollar Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure cloud contract, is speaking publicly about how the Pentagon got it wrong in selecting Microsoft in October."
"The General Services Administration says it has received about 200 comments daily from the feedback tool on beta.SAM.gov since the website became the official source for contract opportunities. The outdated but familiar FedBizOpps.gov was retired by GSA on Nov. 12 as part of the agency’s initiative to merge 10 legacy contract-award systems into one. Users understandably have questions and issues with the replacement."
"With a growing wave of agencies preparing to get on the General Services Administration's next generation telecommunications contract, vendors on the vehicle advise them to focus on the big picture.In the last six months, or so, more and more federal agencies are drawing up final solicitations to make the move to GSA's $50 billion, 15-year Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) contract. Vendors anticipate a flood of EIS solicitations and contract awards ahead of GSA's March 31, 2020 deadline that will restrict the use of its current Networx and local service agreement contracts."
"A core IT modernization effort at the Veterans Affairs Department is billions of dollars over the original budget and the timeline for full deployment has been pushed out to 2030, officials told Congress Thursday. While the agency’s multibillion-dollar effort to modernize its electronic health records system gets most of the attention, a joint hearing Thursday between the House Veterans Affairs Committee subcommittees on Technology Modernization and Oversight and Investigations focused on the agency’s financial management system."
"The bipartisan Congressional Artificial Intelligence Caucus is concerned about the lack of coordination between individual federal departments’ AI offices.Rep. Pete Olson, R-Texas, sitting on a panel next to co-chair Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Calif., said that he wants the different offices throughout agencies dedicated to developing AI capabilities to interact with each other more to increase efficiency."