NASA issues plan for IT services A-76 competition

The government's space agency has issued an acquisition plan for a new NASA Shared Services Center to perform IT and support work for the agency.

NASA's plan calls for creating the center through an OMB Circular A-76 competition that would pit groups of federal employees against vendor teams.

The draft acquisition plan calls for the new center to provide financial management, human resources, procurement and IT services to the agency's headquarters and 10 NASA centers across the country.

Dozens of vendors already have told NASA that they are considering taking part in the A-76 competition. Government employees and existing contractors now carry out the support services covered by the competition, NASA officials said.

NASA plans to issue a final solicitation strategy in July, receive proposals in September and award a contract next May.

The draft acquisition plan noted that the center will focus on three areas of IT support:

  • IT management, including policy development, strategic planning, capital planning, resource management and program management

  • Systems development and engineering

  • Cybersecurity.

  • Much of the accounts payable, payroll, travel reimbursement, property management, employee benefit and other administrative work covered under the acquisition plan also will involve extensive systems expertise.

    NASA plans to fund the center by charging for services.

    The agency said it would award a cost-reimbursement contract to pay for the deal should a vendor win the A-76 competition. Cost-reimbursement contracts are suitable only when uncertainties in contract performance prevent accurate cost estimates, NASA said.

    The procurement plan calls for a five-year initial contract with a maximum term of seven years. NASA said it might shift to a fixed-price contract in the future.

    Wilson P. Dizard III writes for Government Computer News magazine.

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