DOD Leads Professional Services Spending

IDC Government Market Services recently analyzed professional services purchasing trends among federal agencies. The following is an analysis of the market researcher's findings.

The Agencies

In the first tier of government buyers for fiscal 1993-1995, the Defense Department dominates the consumption of professional services to a much greater degree than it does federal information technology overall.

The second tier of buyers consists of NASA and the General Services Administration. A third tier is led by a rapidly growing Department of Health and Human Services, with the departments of Transportation and Treasury following.

Future trends are clouded by discretionary budget squeezes and reductions in federal employment.

Contracting Tendencies

Definitive contract modifications and indefinite-delivery vehicles continue to dominate as the principal modes of acquiring professional services. These kinds of contracting activities picked up the slack from a very slow, new, definitive contract pace in the first quarter of fiscal 1996.

In addition, small- and small, disadvantaged business preference programs held their own or slightly increased their share of professional services spending in fiscal 1995. So far, court rulings unfavorable to a broadly defined 8(a) program have had no impact.

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LeCompte is vice president of IDC Government Market Services.

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