The $5B FBI ITSSS-2 program is right around the corner.  Here is a look at the challenges to prepare a winning bid.

ITSSS-2 Overview

For those organizations holding Special Item Number (SIN) 54151S on their GSA MAS Schedule, the FBI wants you for the Information Technology Supplies and Support Services 2nd Generation (ITSSS-2) acquisition effort. After the release of a draft statement of work a year ago, the FBI is now on a fast track for the acquisition of IT support services ITSSS-2. The resulting contract is expected to be a $5-billion-dollar program providing the FBI with blanket procurement authority for the next eight years after the award, for support to the FBI and the Department of Justice (DOJ).

Draft RFP

The draft RFQ was released May 23, with questions due back on June 5th. The FBI has scheduled an “Industry Event” on 6/13-14 (registration is now closed for this) and has stated its intent to release the final RFQ on 6/21. How realistic that schedule is remains to be seen. You can expect some movement to the right depending upon the number of questions received.

ITSSS-2 Challenges

The FBI is releasing this effort under GSA’s eBuy system which typically means a shortened response, although not necessarily a small one. The FBI has chosen to use a self-scoring methodology somewhat related to the mechanisms used for Polaris and anticipated for OASIS+. Given some of the problems encountered with the Polaris bid, this may change to some extent, driven by industry’s questions on the draft. At least for now, the response will be in four volumes:

  • Volume I — General Information, Security, and LCAT Crosswalk. This volume is administrative data and more of a collection effort than anything else. The LCAT crosswalk does require the use of two different attachments (spreadsheets) to show how your GSA MAS labor categories match to those of the RFQ. This will be a lot of cutting and pasting, particularly if you have a large number of LCATS on your MAS to match to the 125 categories in the RFQ.
  • Volume II — Corporate Experience Self-Certification. Volume II will require the most strenuous lift. It asks for up to 19 separate, 2-page citations of prior work performed similar to the RFQ requirements. Be prepared to match your cited work to the various categories and subcategories of required services, and be able to justify how closely your work matches the requirements. This will determine your scores for the Volume. These 38 pages will require some very concise technical writing to ensure the best possible results. It’s going to be a “forced march” to get everything done in the allotted timeframe, and you may need outside proposal support for either this challenging response or to lighten the burden on your team for other ongoing proposal efforts.
  • Volume III — Corporation Experience Elements. This volume will also require the completion or use of at least two attachments to show how closely your corporate experience (using the 19 examples from Volume II) matches the task areas in the RFQ. Expect there to be some clarification of this area in the final RFQ, because the current wording could be interpreted to require up to 7×19 pages to be compliant!
  • Volume IV — Price. The RFQ is requiring a narrative for the offeror’s basis of estimate (BOE) and supporting documentation in a single Microsoft Word document along with the pricing attachment. In addition, this volume will contain OCI information as well as attachments involving the Acquisition Risk Questionnaire and the Key Management Personnel Listing for all involved organizations.

As can be seen from the above elements, this RFQ response is challenging and will require some serious dedicated effort all within an extremely short amount of time. Attention to detail is a must along with committed resources and the ability to quickly and concisely obtain and organize a lot of data.

What Can We Do to Assist

We can provide proposal consultant resources to either assist with ITSSS-2 or to lessen the burden on your team by supporting other ongoing proposals. Our Proposal Managers and Coordinators are deeply experienced in responding to significant efforts with short turn-around times. Our Technical Writers all have years of experience wringing the most information out of a subject with the least number of words. Our Graphic Artists are skilled in providing easy-to-understand figures that convey information from the strategic down to the tactical. Other resources such as our Editors and Desktop Publishers can polish the final products to ensure a professional presentation to your prospective client.

We offer a Proposal Readiness Review (PRR), which will identify weaknesses or deficiencies in your capability in win a contract.

We are glad to provide (a) a team that could help prepare your entire proposal or (b) talent that may be missing from your team.

Proposal Basic Read our earlier blog article about ITSSS-2.