Move to Drupal means business on Capitol Hill
Chief Administrative Officer seeks preferred vendors for website development
- By Alice Lipowicz
- Jan 11, 2011
The House is embarking on a website transition that will move its 520 websites to the Drupal open-source platform and the 93 freshmen members will get the new platform first.
For web developers that means there might be a lot of potential business on Capitol Hill as the House has released a Sources Sought notice looking for vendors who can build websites for members and House committees. The notice was posted by Dan Strodel, chief administrative officer of the House.
Drupal is a flexible hosting platform and is now the preferred Web hosting environment for House websites, according to the Stodel's notice.
The House's chief administrative officer is looking for preferred vendors who can assist with the Drupal transition, according to the Sources Sought notice. Applications are due by Jan. 28.
Each House member, committee and officer has the authority to select his or her own vendor to produce a website. The goal of the solicitation include preparing a list of prequalified vendors to assist in those procurements, the notice said.
Other goals of the solicitation include:
- Informing vendors about the Drupal platform and the requirements of being a House Web vendor.
- Connecting qualified vendors to House offices that need Web services, especially the new members.
- Getting feedback on proposed Web services agreements to outline how the Drupal vendors will work.
Drupal is an open-source software that can operate websites and is compatible with a number of Web 2.0 and social networking applications. Several federal organizations have adopted Drupal, including the White House.
The House now hosts about 520 websites for its members, committees, leadership, officials and has administrative sites, which include a mix of proprietary and open-source content management platforms.
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The House is working with several Drupal experts on the transition, including Acquia Inc., Phase2 Technology and Ingalls Information Security, according to a statement from Acquia. The team developed, validated and delivered the Drupal 7 platform that will be used by individual members and by House committees.
On Jan. 5, the Drupal websites went live for the 84 GOP freshmen and nine Democratic freshmen, Acquia said.
“When the House went looking for a platform to standardize their Web presence on, they chose Drupal because it met their requirements to accommodate hundreds of independent websites, each with different sets of features; provide the ability to deploy new sites quickly and efficiently; [and] enable House Members to use the web designer or developer of their choice by leveraging the Drupal community,” Dries Buyteart, CTO at Acquia, wrote in his blog Jan. 10.
Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.