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DHS wants to transform headquarters IT

The Homeland Security Department is resurrecting its effort to revamp its headquarters IT operations.

DHS first floated the idea through a sources sought notice on Oct. 3 and then cancelled later the same day, saying they’d repost in a few days.

Now five months later they are back and the description of the project and the questions in the new request for information indicates DHS is looking for transformation. The contract is going by the acronym "HITS" for Headquarters IT Services.

Among the changes DHS is exploring is a move from the current government-owned, contractor operated model to a contractor-owned, contractor operated model. This infrastructure will support 10,500 users and 12,500 assets such as desktops, laptops, thin clients, printers, copiers, servers and video conferencing units.

Users connect into the infrastructure via local area networks, VPNs, and wireless LANs. Data is stored locally, in a data center and in the cloud.

The request for information has a long list of items describing DHS’s vision and goals including:

  • Consolidate A-LAN IT support services
  • Reduce overhead by consolidating multiple support contracts into one vehicle
  • Create a single contract vehicle for service desk, end-user support, engineering, asset management and operational support
  • Transition to an as-a-service managed contract
  • Improve customer services
  • Implement a program for full management of hardware and software procurement, tracking, distribution and accountability

DHS sees its mission demands growing, which drives the need for more flexible and cost-effective IT services. The headquarters staff is increasing distributed so the infrastructure and management model needs to change.

Among the questions to industry:

  • Best practices for transitioning hardware and software to a contractor-owned model
  • Describe a client that you have transitioned to contractor-owned
  • Describe continuity of operations plans and disaster recovery plans for an organization that operates 24x7
  • Best practices for moving to and using a consumption-based billing model

DHS is considering a seven-to-10 year contract for HITS. There is no estimate currently for its value but considering the size and scope of the contract, it’ll likely be high on the list of companies that tout themselves as leaders in the IT modernization segment of the market.

DHS also recently decided to not recompete Eagle II, its $22 billion multiple-award IT services contract. Instead DHS will use existing GSA and NIH contracts. It is unclear at this point whether HITS will be a standalone vehicle or will be let through an existing IDIQ.

Comments are due March 25.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Mar 13, 2019 at 1:20 PM


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