DHS restarts financial system competition

The Homeland Security Department has restarted the procurement process for its planned financial management system consolidation to comply with a decision by the U.S. Federal Claims Court and recommendations from department’s inspector general.

A request for information, issued by DHS on May 29, asks for information on possible solutions from shared service providers along with other qualified commercial and government providers, It reqwuests information on how  to transition DHS components from existing financial management systems to an integrated solution.

DHS had come under fire for its decision to limit potential solutions for its systems consolidation that will fuse the department’s financial systems to either Oracle or SAP platforms. The procurement was in the request for proposal phase when Savantage Financial Services, Inc. protested DHS’ decision to limit the potential final platform to one of those two companies.

In April, the  claims court decided for Savantage and held that DHS’ decision to settle on Oracle or SAP systems was an improper sole-source procurement. The court ordered DHS to hold an open competition before moving forward on the project.

The new RFI does not preclude SAP or Oracle from competition, rather expands the competition.

In a recent report, the DHS IG said that the department had not considered solutions other agencies are using or that are available in a shared-services environment, and DHS should see if some of them are more efficient before moving forward with the consolidation as planned.

Larry Orluskie, a DHS spokesman, said the department was moving ahead with a new acquisition strategy that will include competition from “a broader range of technology solutions.”

About the Author

Ben Bain is a reporter for Federal Computer Week.

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