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FCW : June 15, 2015
The U.S. Digital Service and the Office of Management and Budget’s Office of Federal Procurement Policy want someone to teach the proverbial man to fish — for better digital pro- curements. The agencies are using Chal- lenge.gov to solicit proposals for the development of a train- ing program, and the winning submission could earn as much as $320,000 in prize money. The challenge’s goal is to create a Digital Service Con- tracting Professional Training and Development Program. The program will ideally be no more than six months long and aimed at helping federal contracting officers and con- tract specialists navigate the procurement of digital services, according to the announcement on Challenge.gov. A successful program will teach contracting professionals how to: • Understand and buy digital services and supplies using concepts described in the Digital Services Playbook and TechFAR, which include DevOps, user experience, agile software develop- Teaching contracting officers to buy digital services of public-sector mobile devices activated in the first quarter of 2014 ran on iOS 80% Trending ment, open source, cloud, infrastruc- ture as a service, software as a service and platform as a service). • Appropriately measure the success of digital services contracts according to industry standards. • Accurately describe and define the value received. • Encourage the use of commercial practices and innovative approaches — for example, modular contracting, broad agency announcements, chal- lenges and prizes — to ensure that procurements can capture flexible and rapidly changing technol- ogy advancements. The challenge has three phases. In Phase I, partici- pants will submit white papers detailing their concepts for the training program. Three final- ists will be selected and given $20,000 to move forward with their designs. In Phase II, the finalists will present mock classroom train- ing and the full design of their programs. One winner will move to Phase III, in which $250,000 in milestone payments will fund a pilot training program. If the design meets the gov- ernment’s objectives, the win- ner will be eligible for a final $50,000 prize payment. Phase I submissions will be accept- ed through June 23, and the Phase III pilot program should be completed and presented to OMB by Jan. 31, 2016. — Mark Rockwell FCW CALENDAR Open data AFCEA Bethesda’s annual Data Symposium will focus on “impacts in the day and life of the citizen.” NIST’s Ram Sriram is among the invited speakers. Washington, D.C. http://is.gd/FCW_afcea_data GWACs ACT-IAC and the NIH IT Acquisition and Assessment Center will host a discussion of governmentwide acquisition contracts’ role in “Smarter IT Acquisition.” Washington, D.C . http://is.gd/FCW_gwac15 6/30 6/18 NOMINATIONS NOW OPEN Nominations for the 2015 Rising Star awards are due July 2. Submit yours at fcw.com/2015risingstars. June 15, 2015 FCW.COM 3 Rising to the challenge The Digital Service Contracting Professional Training and Development Program must help federal procurement officials: • Become digital service procurement experts. • Gain the knowledge necessary to become embedded in agency digital service teams and serve as business advisers to teams, their customers and their stakeholders. • Learn how to lead agency training, workshops and consultations to expand digital service procurement expertise within their agencies and the government. Source: Challenge.gov 0615fcw_003-011.indd 3 5/27/15 1:53 PM
May 30, 2015
June 30, 2015