Qwest expands network center for Networx

The telecommunications providers who won places on the General Services Administration's Networx contract are continuing the preparations needed to begin filling orders.

Qwest Communications International Inc. today opened it expanded network operations center in Arlington, Va., today as part of its Networx effort. Roxane Rucker, the company's senior director of Networx program management, told an audience that included agency representatives that they should consider Qwest a serious competitor for agency business.

She urged them to look at pricing with a holistic view, rather than focusing on individual Contract Line Item Numbers, known in the trade as CLIN.

"Don't get hung up on, 'this CLIN is higher, this CLIN is lower,'" she said. "It's the total cost of the solution" that matters.

Qwest also announced the roster of services it will offer under Networx Enterprise, one of the two Networx contracts. Enterprise provides a small range of mandatory services and a longer list of optional ones, without requiring the ubiquitous geographic coverage called for under the Networx Universal contract.

Qwest, AT&T Inc. and Verizon Inc. hold both Universal and Enterprise contracts. Sprint Solutions Inc. and Level 3 Communications LLC also have Enterprise contracts, but are not on Universal.

"Networx Enterprise underscores Qwest's ability to deliver innovative technology," said Diana Gowen, senior vice president and general manager of Qwest government services.

The other vendors have been busy as well. In late May, AT&T opened a new Transition Management Center in Oakton, Va., to provide services to agencies as they move from the expiring FTS 2001 contracts to Networx over the next two or three years.

Verizon opened a Government Network Operations and Security Center in 2006, and in May formally announced a suite of services for Networx customers.

About the Author

Technology journalist Michael Hardy is a former FCW editor.

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