Procurement

Tech teams aim to upend procurement

Teams of techies will bring new acquisition models to the government as part of the Digital Acquisitions Pilot.

Announced by 18F in a March 10 blog post, the pilot is meant to complement the Office of Federal Procurement Policy's memo establishing acquisition innovation labs.

"This pilot will test the following hypothesis: If each agency had its own cadre of highly trained, cross-functional digital experts, the value, quality, cost, and timeliness of digital and technology acquisitions would improve," 18F's blog post states.

Teams will be three-way collaborations between 18F, Presidential Innovation Fellows and the U.S. Digital Service. They will tackle two projects at seven agencies, for a total of 14 projects covering everything from cybersecurity to legal issues to agile project management.

The main goals are to improve information sharing between teams and agencies, boost acquisition workforce training, tamp down on multiyear mega-contracts and help innovative small businesses -- which might have struggled with complex federal acquisition regulations -- connect with the government.

Lessons will be shared on the Acquisition Gateway. 18F has previously experimented with other innovative acquisition techniques, including micro-purchases of code.

About the Author

Zach Noble is a former FCW staff writer.

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