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FCW : July 15, 2015
EVolVing With SEWP V EVolV olVol ing With SEWP V contract guidE T he fifth iteration of NASA’s Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Procurement (SEWP), after a year’s delay due to protests, is finally underway. Its predecessor stopped taking new orders at the end of April, passing the baton to a contract that more than doubled its government- wide usage over SEWP IV’s eight-year run, with officials confident that SEWP V will at least equal if not outdo that. “I’ve already said that, in my view, we should also double the usage (over SEWP V’s 10-year term),” said Joanne Woytek, SEWP program manager, who has been with the Governmentwide Acquisition Contract (GWAC) from its first day. “If we don’t, it’s because we have not met our customers’ needs, but everything seems to be telling us we’ve done things right (with SEWP V), so I’m optimistic.” Today’s SEWP is a completely different animal than the Scientific and Engineering Workstation Procurement contract that started life in 1993 as a way for NASA users to buy computers. SEWP V covers a much broader range of products and services that reflects the complex IT that agencies have to use today, from IT and communications products to audio visual solutions, and the installation, engineering and training services needed to manage that. More than that, however, SEWP has evolved into a vehicle that actively works with agencies to help them meet their business goals, something that many believe set it apart from other GWACs such as the National Institutes of Health’s Chief Information Officer- Commodities and Solutions (CIO-CS) and the GSA’s Schedule 70. “I think we’ve done (SEWP V) right, and everything we’ve seen so far is showing us that,” Woytek said. “So I’m extremely optimistic, and that we’ll play a key role in agency procurement plans.” It’s not that SEWP is trying to take anything away from either the NIH or GSA contracts, she said, but she thinks people want contracts that provide the control, tracking, good access and good pricing that SEWP now provides them. SEWP V is set to morph yet again, from a strict products-and-solutions focus to one that provides a more strategic platform for users. Woytek and her staff began looking at a change in SEWP’s vision and mission several years ago, based both on their own experiences and on what their customers told them they needed. “We’ve gone from being a purely ‘come by and order’ contract to one that, if nothing else, allows agencies at the highest level to track and report on what they’re buying, and that also provides them with control over what’s being bought,” Woytek said. As SEWP IV progressed, the program office would get a lot of feedback from people about how they could buy certain things on the contracts, if they could do this or that, and that feedback fed into a gradual realization that SEWP wasn’t where its customers wanted it to be. So there was a conscious decision made for the program office to get out into the field and be more visible and be more of a leader in the acquisition world, and to try and get more of the SEWP V SEES a futurE of broadEr uSE and incrEaSing groWth “We’re already seeing the same rate of ordering from the final year of SEWP IV continuing into SEWP V.” - Joanne Woytek, SEWP program manager
June 30, 2015
July 30, 2015