Eye on procurement

Nick Wakeman

This issue features two stories, a column and a letter to the editor that focus to varying degrees on problems in the government procurement process.

A story by Associate Editor David Hubler tracks the evolution of an acquisition regulation that will require contractors to show they have appropriate ethics policies and procedures in place.

And Associate Editor Michael Hardy reports on the Project on Government Oversight's new database that tracks allegations of fraud and abuse against government contractors.

Columnist Stan Soloway, president of the Professional Services Council, defends contractors in his Buylines column and criticizes the POGO database for lacking context and being misleading.

In our Need to Know section, we have a letter to the editor from Ray Oleson, chairman of SI International Inc., who advocates more training for procurement professionals, both those working for the government and those working for contractors.

We didn't plan for all of these elements to be in one issue. It's part of the serendipity of journalism that independent thinkers gravitate toward important topics.

Information technology contractors are under more scrutiny today, and that scrutiny should be expected if you consider the important role contractors play in government operations. The increasing complexity of the projects contractors routinely tackle adds to the scrutiny. Complexity means risk, and the possibility of failure is always a part of risk. And, of course, with failure comes more scrutiny.

Don't expect this to change anytime soon.

About the Author

Nick Wakeman is the editor-in-chief of Washington Technology. Follow him on Twitter: @nick_wakeman.

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