Skip to content

Home » government contracting

government contracting

By Jonathan Sanders, Director, Research, GovExec

The White House-led National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource (NAIRR) Task Force has recently requested $2.6 billion in funding to support AI research and development over an initial six year period. 

In a final report titled, “Strengthening and Democratizing the U.S. Artificial Intelligence Innovation Ecosystem,” the NAIRR Take Force has provided a roadmap to fund its plan to stand up a national research infrastructure that would increase accessibility to resources quintessential to AI research and development. 

Originally organized by the National AI Initiative Act of 2020,  the NAIRR Task Force is a federal advisory committee co-chaired by the U.S. National Science Foundation and the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy

The final report is the culmination of the Task Force’s 18-month effort to develop and vision an implementation plan for establishing the NAIRR, with the overall goal of strengthening and democratizing the US AI Innovation ecosystem in a way that protects privacy, civil rights, and civil liberties. 

The NAIRR Task Force notes four measurable goals to meet its overall goals:

  1. Spur innovation
  2. Increase diversity of talent
  3. Improving capacity
  4. Advance trustworthy AI

NAIRR is allocating $2.25 billion of the investment to fund resource availability through appropriations across multiple Federal agencies. It also suggests a funding scheme to include:

  • Resource providers should be brought online every two years with a six-year lifetime so that a new $750 million investment is made every two years to ensure that the NAIRR resources remain state-of-the-art
  • The non-government operating entity behind the NAIRR would receive about $55-$65 million every year to support the coordination and management of NAIRR activities
  • An additional $5 million per year is budgeted for external evaluation of the operating entity and NAIRR performance

Existing and upcoming Federal AI policy and guidance will serve as the bedrock for the NAIRR’s operations, including the Biden Administration’s Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights, and the AI framework from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). 

What this means for you

While AI research and development advances rapidly in the United States, there is still time for your organization to contribute to this critical technology development that will go on to shape US national capabilities across Federal, State and Local, and Department of Defense markets for years to come.

Insights, Research, and YOUR Path to More Awards

GovExec’s Insights & Research Group (comprising Market Connections, Government Business Council, and Leading Brands) and GovTribe can keep you up to date on what is happening in this rapidly changing contract environment. 

GovTribe is a collaborative platform that lends business development teams a hand through research and tracking of contracting vehicles as well as targeted intelligence on GSA Federal Supply Schedules, GWACS, IDIQs, and other multiple award vehicles.

Combining the data, insights, and expert analysis you get at Market Connections with the ease, agility, and usability of GovTribe can help you strategically position yourself right where you want to be for future opportunities.

Questions? Please reach out to Jonathan Sanders at jsanders@govexec.com.

By Jonathan Sanders, Director, Research, GovExec

In early January 2023, the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) issued a draft RFP for the Transformation Twenty-One Total Technology Next Generation (T4NG2) contract. The T4NG2 represents a potential $60.7 billion contract vehicle for information technology products and services. 

Since its inception in 2016, the T4NG vehicle has seen $11.7 billion in task order obligations, and will run alongside the T4NG2 contract as the VA winds down task orders once the original contract reaches its $22.3 billion ceiling. 

Originally designed to allow the VA to acquire services for IT programs that help ensure the timely delivery of healthcare for Veterans, the T4NG2 program will continue to be the VA’s primary IT vehicle.

With the draft RFP becoming publicly available January 13, there is a tight turnaround with comments due this coming Friday, January 20. 

Keeping with this pace, the VA’s Technology Acquisition Center (TAC) will host an industry day for the T4NG2 procurement on Thursday, February 2 from 11:00AM – 12:30PM EST. Planned topics include acquisition strategy, basis of award, overview of changes from T4NG, solicitation walkthrough, and questions and answers, with a final solicitation in February. 

T4NG2 will covering the below services:

  • Program Management
  • Strategy, enterprise architecture and planning
  • Systems and software engineering
  • Software technology demonstration and transition
  • Test and evaluation
  • Independent verification and validation
  • Enterprise network
  • Enterprise management framework
  • Operations and maintenance
  • Cybersecurity
  • Training
  • IT Facilities 

The VA plans to make 30 awards, and if companies are tied for the 30th spot, there will be more than 30 awards. However, the VA will only make 29 awards if six or more companies are tied in that final position. 

What this means for you

With a ceiling increase from nearly $22 billion from the original T4NG, to upwards of $60 billion in the T4NG2 program, it is imperative now more than ever to be ahead of the GovCon pack. As they say in GovCon, when the RFP is released, it’s already too late. 

Insights, Research, and YOUR Path to More Awards

GovExec’s Insights & Research Group (comprising Market Connections, Government Business Council, and Leading Brands) and GovTribe can keep you up to date on what is happening in this rapidly changing contract environment. 

GovTribe is a collaborative platform that lends business development teams a hand through research and tracking of contracting vehicles as well as targeted intelligence on GSA Federal Supply Schedules, GWACS, IDIQs, and other multiple award vehicles.

Combining the data, insights, and expert analysis you get at Market Connections with the ease, agility, and usability of GovTribe can help you strategically position yourself right where you want to be for future opportunities.

Questions? Please reach out to Jonathan Sanders at jsanders@govexec.com.

By Jonathan Sanders, Director, Research, GovExec

In October 2022, the General Services Administration (GSA) issued a draft RFP for Alliant 3, their latest governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC) that aims to provide Federal Government agencies with integrated IT solutions services for evolving needs on a global basis.

“GWACs serve as a springboard for small businesses to grow,” said Exodie C. Roe III, Associate Administrator for the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization

This contract will allow for the application of technology to meet current and evolving business needs required to satisfy all IT requirements worldwide at any time, fostering a “Anything IT Anywhere” philosophy. This service contract does not have a specific ceiling, and will leverage a self-scoring approach for prospective bidders, which has worked on procurements including OASIS, ASTRO, HCaTS, and Alliant 2. 

GSA anticipates that multiple awards shall be made up to a maximum of 60 awards to the highest scoring bidders. 

As a restricted GWAC, small businesses are eligible to participate in the solicitation. The average value of each contract under Alliant 2 is $116M.

When asked about the planned features of Alliant 3, GSA mentioned:

  • Providing an Unpriced Master Contract (subject to approval) 
  • Maintaining a Best-in-Class (BIC) solution designation
  • Sustaining Standardized Labor Categories (LCATS) and the Prices Paid Portal
  • No Master Contract Ceiling (subject to approval)
  • Implementing Innovative Environmental and Sustainability Plans
  • Enhancing the Customer Experience
  • Increased IT Modernization Capabilities
  • Performance Standard Improvement
  • Provisioning for Regular Open Seasons
  • Streamlining Proposal Submissions and Evaluations
  • Increased Focus on Small Business through Subcontracting Plans, Performance Standards, and Evaluation Factor

Alliant 3 builds upon the successful Alliant and Alliant 2 GWACs. It is a new unrestricted enterprise GWAC that will have an increased focus on emerging technology, performance based contracting measures, small business subcontracting. It will also have open seasons and an environmental and sustainability plan. 

Additional differentiating features in Alliant 3 include:

  • Providing an Unpriced Master Contract (subject to approval) 
  • Eliminating a Master Contract Ceiling (subject to approval)
  • Provisioning for Open Seasons opportunities

What this means for you

Alliant 2 received a $25 billion ceiling increase in August, 2022, bringing the total ceiling to a staggering $75 billion. With add ons and efficiencies for the Alliant 3 GWAC underway, one can expect a nominal increase in estimated value.  Now is the time to prepare your business to get on the next GWAC. 

Insights, Research, and YOUR Path to More Awards

GovExec’s Insights & Research Group (comprising Market Connections, Government Business Council, and Leading Brands) and GovTribe can keep you up to date on what is happening in this rapidly changing contract environment. 

GovTribe is a collaborative platform that lends business development teams a hand through research and tracking of contracting vehicles as well as targeted intelligence on GSA Federal Supply Schedules, GWACS, IDIQs, and other multiple award vehicles.

Combining the data, insights, and expert analysis you get at Market Connections with the ease, agility, and usability of GovTribe can help you strategically position yourself right where you want to be for future opportunities.

Questions? Please reach out to Jonathan Sanders at jsanders@govexec.com.