GSA COMET Contract Looks to Cloud, Agile Dev for Back Office IT

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The General Services Administration (GSA) released a request for information detailing part of the Federal Acquisition Service’s (FAS’) new CIO Modernization and Enterprise Transformation contract–named COMET for short–and highlighted the guiding principles of cloud-native solutions, SecDevOps, and data management.

Comments on the RFI are due December 10.

COMET, a recompete of GSA’s existing CAMEO contract, keeps the focus on modernization but updates GSA’s priorities from the 2014 contract to keep up with today’s technology. GSA plans to issue a multiple award blanket purchase agreement for app maintenance, enhancement, and transformation using the criteria in the RFI and vendors from IT Schedule 70, and plans to issue a single award on architectural and programmatic services.

On cloud, GSA made it clear the agency is looking to move away from the status quo.

“Our goal is not lift and shift, we strive to build cloud native solutions in order to improve efficiency, scalability, and resilience,” the RFI states.

The RFI lays out key principles for prospective bidders, and on cloud, the focus is solidly on developing for the cloud. GSA’s list includes decomposing applications into API-driven services, using containerized workloads, developing solutions with a preference toward open standards, and automating infrastructure as code.

“FAS IT seeks vendors that take a holistic approach, bringing people, process, and technology into alignment to deliver the optimal results from effective use of Agile and DevOps practices,” the RFI states.

The RFI points to agile development as a key factor, setting the key principles of understanding FAS’ mission, shortening cycle times, and organizing around SecDevOps teams. GSA also emphasized that security should not be siloed, but should be considered everyone’s job.

On data management, FAS is requesting a single view of data assets across all systems to help the agency in its decision-making. The COMET RFI also includes a request for clear data governance processes, and capabilities to analyze data quality.

 

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