With the contract finally settled, OPM has Monster plans for USAJobs.gov

In the two years since the Office of Personnel Management revamped how the federal government posts job listings and accepts resumes online, USAJobs.gov has received more than 130 million unique visits and 1.5 million new resumes.

All of this success came as agencies moved slowly to integrate their back-end systems with the new Web site as a cloud, in the form of a contract protest, hung over the e-government project.

But the uncertainty that some agencies felt should be gone as OPM has settled—at least for the next few years—on Monster Government Solutions to run the USAJobs.gov portal.

OPM late last month awarded the New York-based company a five-year contract that could be worth up to $27.1 million. The contract replaces the original $62.1 million award to Monster that was protested by Symplicity Corp. of Arlington, Va., in January 2003.

The Government Accountability Office sustained Symplicity’s protest, but OPM decided against recompeting the contract until the House Government Reform Committee threatened to withhold future project funding.

OPM released the new request for proposals last July, and it took about 12 months to award the new contract.

“In the case of Monster, OPM was happy with their performance in the previous contract and, based on their overall proposal and their price, was well in alignment with what we were currently paying,” said Ron Flom, OPM’s procurement executive. “We decided they offered the government the best value.”

A spokesman for Symplicity, which was one of two losing bidders for the contract, expressed disappointment over OPM’s decision.

“Symplicity is waiting for a debriefing from OPM,” the spokesman said. “It seems that OPM just went through the motions.”

The spokesman said Symplicity’s price was close to $13 million less than Monster’s and that their proposal was technically acceptable.

“We will be interested to see how OPM will justify this expense, especially with the budgetary pressure e-government is receiving from Congress,” the spokesman added.

A spokesman for the House Government Reform Committee said the panel was pleased with the award.

“OPM briefed the Government Reform Committee on the recompete and it satisfied our earlier concerns,” said Drew Crockett, the committee spokesman.

Monster’s project manager for USAJobs.gov, Dan De MaioNewton, said the re-award of the contract will resolve any concerns agencies had about integrating with the USAJobs.gov Web site and give the company the opportunity to move forward with technology innovations more quickly.

He said that in the next 12 months Monster will add an application-status tracking tool, redesign the look of USAJobs.gov and Students.gov, integrate and accept a Level 2 certification under the E-Authentication e-government project and improve the search for job functions, letting users sort by salary, location or specific job title.

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