Forest Service workers win sourcing work

Officials in the Agriculture Department's Forest Service have announced their intent to award a five-year, $295 million competitive sourcing contract to the service's information technology services group.

Under the rules of competitive sourcing, agency officials said they could offer no further information about the winning proposal until a waiting period ends. If the losing vendor does not protest or file an appeal, details about the Forest Service's bid could be made public by Aug. 16, said Joan Golden, the agency's acting director for information resources management.

Even if the award stands, employees in the service's IT support group can expect changes, Golden said. Competitive sourcing is done to save money on operating expenses, so most likely, the agency's proposal calls for a smaller IT organization with fewer employees.

Competitive sourcing permits companies to compete against federal employees for jobs deemed by officials to be nongovernmental in nature.

Generally speaking, competitive sourcing creates organizations with at least 30 percent fewer employees, said Colleen Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union, which represents 150,000 federal employees. "That means there easily still could be a reduction in force, even if the employees win," she said.

Without disclosing details about how the Forest Service's new IT support group would be structured, Golden said many officials within the agency are looking forward to changes. "We're excited about our new organization, so we're kind of on pins and needs here to see if we can move ahead immediately, or if there's another hurdle or two to cross over," she said.

Featured

  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected

FCW INSIDER

Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.