Army prepares contract action on enterprise programs

RFPs expected soon for consolidated e-mail efforts, key IT projects

As the Army works to integrate and centralize its portion of the military’s Global Information Grid under the Global Network Enterprise Construct, timelines for several departmentwide programs are emerging including for one of the GNEC effort’s biggest moves, enterprise e-mail.

The final request for proposals on enterprise e-mail likely will be issued in the third quarter of this year, with a contract award coming sometime during the fourth quarter of 2010, according to Army Chief Information Officer Lt. Gen. Jeffrey Sorenson.


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The Army released a draft RFP on March 5 to consolidate e-mail services, representing a major step in the ongoing GNEC effort to consolidate Army information technology. The call for proposals is a long-awaited move, Sorenson acknowledged. “It’s taking some time to figure out the managed services,” he said.

Sorenson, speaking at the AFCEA Belvoir Industry Day outside Washington, D.C. on March 30, also said he expects a third- or fourth-quarter 2010 contract award for Area Processing Centers, which provide IT services and hosting and storage for applications and data under the Army’s Network Service Centers.

Additionally, Sorenson drew attention to the need for common network integration kits, a vestige of the canceled Future Combat Systems program. The kits would streamline the clutter of various tools and hardware used for situational awareness at the tactical level. The various boxes, mounts and power sources used for these tools weigh down Army vehicles on the ground, Sorenson said.

“You end up with vehicles running around today with 1,000-watt alternators,” Sorenson said. “[The kits are] good capability from the standpoint of standardizing the capability we put in these vehicles, so everybody does not have to bring a new screen, a new power source,” he said, adding that the kits are currently being tested at Fort Sill, Okla.

Another upcoming contract opportunity will be consolidation Army’s active directories, which comprise 15 “forests” that house the data and networks associated with a number of e-mail systems the Army uses. The consolidation is part of the larger move to enterprise e-mail.

Gary Winkler, program executive officer, Program Executive Office–Enterprise Information Systems, said an RFP for the active directory effort could come as early as April.

He said other upcoming contract action is expected for new Army base radio systems as well as for IT services and solutions under the Acquisition, Logistics, Technology Enterprise Systems and Services, which manages information services for Army acquisition.

About the Author

Amber Corrin is a former staff writer for FCW and Defense Systems.

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