WT Business Beat

By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

JEDI small business goals represent big opportunity

With a price tag expected to be measured in the multi-billions, the winner of the Defense Department’s Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure contract will undoubtedly be a major player in the market.

And of course, there is plenty of speculation on who those major players will be.

But the draft solicitation requires a significant small business plan of 30 percent. And often companies bidding on big projects propose small business participation plans even higher than the requirement in the solicitation.

Here is what the draft is asking for:

  • Extent of the plan to use small business, small, disadvantaged business, women-owned small business, HUBZone businesses, veteran-owned, and service disabled small business.
  • Level of commitment to these firms.
  • Type of work they will perform.
  • Signed statements of commitment.
  • Extent of small business participation against the total value.
  • Detailed documentation supporting the plan.

I know, this is the typical stuff but the primes chasing JEDI – even if it is only two – will be keen to put together a small business plan that can help differentiate their bids.

Both Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure have extensive partner networks, so I expect that the teams will come together quickly, if they haven’t already.

A memo from the Joint Requirements Oversight Council, which was released with the draft solicitation, offers great insights into some of the priorities of JEDI. These will influence all of the teaming arrangements that form, not just the small business plans.

Some of the priorities include resiliency, mission criticality, cyber defenses, training, streamlining cybersecurity accreditation, cyber workforce development and bandwidth.

One detail I haven’t been able to find in the draft solicitation nor has DOD responded to my questions is how JEDI will roll out.

MilCloud 2.0, for example, has rolled out first at Tinker and Maxwell Air Force Bases.

Different companies have different strengths and different workforces at different installations and facilities. Who has strengths at what locations can have an influence on who gets picked for which team.

I’ve been in two requests for the rollout plan and will update if I get a response. We’ll also start bugging the likely bidders for any details on their proposed teams.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Mar 09, 2018 at 9:44 AM

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