Winning the $30B FBI IT $$$ Contract

  |  April 9, 2018

The FBI’s Information Technology Supplies and Support Services Contract (FBI IT SSS) could have been named, more aptly, the FBI IT $$$ contract, due to its $30B price tag.

Interest in this recompete is particularly keen, both because of its high-dollar figure, and the number of expected awardees. The original contract, awarded eight years ago under secrecy to a select group of companies under IDIQ, BPA and BOA arrangements, was a boon to 46 different firms. These ranged from Accenture to World Wide Technology, Inc., and each came away with at least one TO weighing in at a minimum, that’s minimum, of $132 million.

After release seemed to move to the right forever, the FBI provided a detailed schedule on March 21. Key dates included the following:

1. Draft SOW – April 9
2. Industry Day – April 25
3. DRFP – July 27
4. RFP – August 17 with a 6-week turn

The original CO is no longer running the show; the FBI’s huddling about the requirement specifics; and the contracting office has let it be known that inquiries concerning this effort are not, at present, welcome.

Nonetheless, the final IT SSS RFP, will, word has it, be competed F&O/Unrestricted. And although the number of awardees is TBD, the FBI seems likely to award big ticket TOs in a similarly generous, spread-the-wealth fashion.

Proposal Preparation

In order to win a piece of this, proposal support efforts should be targeted at focusing on the cutting edge of IT service provision. While the FBI requires the most advanced hard and software out there, they also require broad-scope technical and development-related capabilities. They want proposals to specifically explain how the bidders will handle submission of fully functional prototypes and proofs of concept pertaining to field systems, to include rapid application development, joint application development, agile methodologies, object-oriented approaches and enterprise architecture development.

The FBI is also looking for expertise and experience in the areas of Training, Studies and Research; White Paper development; production of briefing material and template documents; as well as project-support-related initiatives.

Office of American Innovation

Additionally, clues as to what the FBI may be evolving in its assessment of IT requirements that could find their way into the final IT SSS solicitation are likely to be found in documents pertaining to a new executive department — the White House Office of American Innovation (WHOAI), that was created by the White House last year. (See link below.)

This entity has been tasked with making the US Government more business-like and privatizing more of its functions. Comprised of a “SWAT team of strategic consultants” the WHOAI includes business luminaries and is headed by Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law, presently the White House’s main point of contact for the American tech industry.

Soon after the WHOAI’s creation, the White House held a summit — its purpose was to “unleash American business.” Summit attendees included an impressive roster of tech CEOs—Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Apple’s Tim Cook, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, IBM’s Ginni Rometty and more. Among early achievements, it spurred the decision by the VA to buy a new, multibillion-dollar computer system.

Bidders on the FBI IT SSS would be well advised to buckle down and study closely what these tech wizards are up to and how development and installation of the new VA system goes. How all this plays out is likely to impact what goes into the FBI’s final IT SSS RFP, and who wins, and who loses in the bidding.