After the Department of Homeland Security cancelled the $1.5 billion Flexible Agile Support for the Homeland (FLASH) procurement May 26, the vendor community was irritated, and rightfully so. This Small Business (SB) set-aside, procured through the DHS Procurement Innovation Lab (PIL), required time, money, and expertise to undertake a technical challenge. Bidders had to demonstrate specialized skills in the incremental Agile software development methodology with rapid prototyping and better user interfaces. Numerous protests and a cancelled procurement After 111 companies applied for a spot on this IDIQ through a process that included limited written proposals, a three-minute initial video, and a four-hour live technology demonstration, DHS made 11 awards that were quickly the subject of 35 separate protests by 10 bidders. Protests centered around numerous mistakes made in the evaluation process. When DHS subsequently cancelled the procurement after six months, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) dismissed the protests. Industry outcry … Continue reading DHS FLASH 2.0: Should you invest in this procurement?
Innovation is not simply about new ideas. It is also about responding rapidly and effectively to changing market conditions. The Federal Government is gradually emulating successful commercial market innovations such as category management, Agile procurement, and performance-based acquisition. Capture and proposal professionals must understand these trends and respond effectively with new and/or improved strategies and processes. Category management Category management is a purchasing concept whereby like supplies and/or services are grouped into similar categories. The purpose is to achieve more-effective competition while reducing costs and risks as well as gaining access to greater innovation from suppliers. Department of Defense (DoD) Better Buying Power initiatives as well as Office of Management and Budget (OMB) category management policy related to laptops and desktops, software licensing, and mobile devices and services are all aimed at allowing the Federal Government to act as a single efficient enterprise by sharing best practices and information. Innovative … Continue reading Procurement innovation