Survey: Integrators prefer agency-specific awards

Most systems integrators prefer to get agency-specific contracts rather than governmentwide vehicles, even though many say that governmentwide acquisition contracts provide the majority of their business opportunities, according to a new survey.

Seventy-two percent of the respondents said they would rather use agency-specific contracts, while 28 percent favored GWACs and multiple-award contracts, said Market Connections Inc. of Fairfax, Va., which conducted the survey.

The margin was narrower for small businesses than for large firms, Market Connections said. Small businesses favored agency-specific vehicles by 79 percent to 21 percent, while large companies preferred them by 66 percent to 34 percent.

Preferences aside, however, a number of companies said they expect to get more business from GWACs and MACs over the next 24 months. The margin was narrow, however, with 35 percent predicting more from GWACs and 32 percent expecting more from agency specific pacts. Another 18 percent foresee activity being about the same for both and 15 percent declined to predict.

The survey also asked respondents to rate the degree to which certain factors are a challenge to working with the federal government. The top five, and the percentage of respondents rating each as a significant challenge, are:
  • Attracting, motivating and keeping talented employees (65 percent)
  • Better understanding and meeting customer expectations (63 percent)
  • Establishing good pricing strategies (61 percent)
  • Addressing intensifying competition (60 percent)
  • Effectively managing contracts (52 percent)

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

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