GSA readies RFI for next wave of e-gov projects

The General Services Administration by the end of the month will kick off new business consolidation initiatives by releasing a request for information.

John Sindelar, director of the line-of-business e-government projects, said GSA is asking vendors to submit proposals that identify systems, best practices, migration strategies and key interfaces to develop common systems in each of four business areas: case management, financial management, human resources and the back-end grant management.

A fifth business line, federal health architecture, is not suitable for the RFI process, Sindelar said. "There probably is no single common solution that can support all eight subfunctions in the federal health line of business," he said. "Even though they share some data and other functions, each of the eight subfunctions are substantially different."

But for the other four areas, the functions are mostly related, Sindelar said.

For financial management, GSA is asking vendors to look at the functional areas of accounts payable and receivable, general ledger and the functions related to budget execution.

Under human resources, GSA detailed 15 functions contractors need to consider, including personnel action processing, vacancy tracking, training management, position classification and management, benefits administration and labor relations.

The functions for grants and case management are much more direct. For grants, GSA is asking vendors to discuss disbursement, and for case management, the ability to share information.

"I've heard that Justice has 70 case management systems alone," Sindelar said. "We need to work toward a more consolidated approach for all of these lines of business."

The RFI, which will be issued on FedBizOpps, will include a set of generic and specific questions for each line of business.

"The RFI will bring input and gives transparency to the process," Sindelar said. "It allows industry to provide viewpoints and fresh innovative ideas for the next steps."

Responses will be due in mid-May, he said.

The Office of Management and Budget earlier this month set up task forces for each line of business. The teams will review the responses and draft recommendations and possible alternatives by June.

The lead agencies then will use the information to develop business cases for the fiscal 2006 budget submissions.

(Posted 12:12 p.m. March 30 and corrected 8:01 a.m. March 31)

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