Continuous Improvement Fuels SEWP IV Success
Popular GWAC Approaches $10 billion in Sales
Joanne Woytek says she is often happy but never satisfied with the NASA Solutions for Enterprise-Wide Procurement (SEWP) IV governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC), a philosophy that keeps the SEWP IV program manager constantly searching for ways to improve the program. This past year was no exception as Woytek and her staff implemented numerous changes to enhance the support they provide to both agency customers and contract holders.
Among the improvements, the SEWP IV program has put in place a new Quote Request Tool to streamline the acquisition process for agencies, installed a new Ticket system that automatically tracks agency orders throughout their lifecycle, and strengthened the Quote Verification Tool for gathering information about product prices and descriptions.
“Agencies can leverage our resources and tools and services to get the products they need—quickly and easily—at competitive prices.” Joanne Woytek, NASA SEWP IV Program ManagerCustomers in Every Agency
In addition, the SEWP IV staff created a new Mission Statement and Vision Statement to help guide the program’s activities, particularly as they begin planning efforts for the follow-on SEWP V contract, which is slated to begin in May 2014. “We are not just a contract but a program that manages the contract,” Woytek said. “Agencies can leverage our resources and tools and services to get the products they need—quickly and easily—at competitive prices.”
SEWP IV is an indefinite-delivery, indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) GWAC offering a wide variety of advanced IT products and product-related services, including hardware and software, maintenance, warranty, installation, and product training, at fixed prices. All federal agencies can use the SEWP IV contract, which consists of 38 competed prime contract holders and includes 17 small businesses. Together, these contractors offer more than two million products from more than 3,800 manufacturers.
SEWP IV is not a services contract, but agencies can purchase initial support services, such as operational support, as long as the services do not exceed 10 percent of the costs of the products being purchased.
SEWP IV charges agencies a fee of just 0.45 percent—the lowest among the GWACs—to use the contract vehicle. In addition, all fees are capped at $10,000 per order. The self-funding program does not make a profit; and, in fact, SEWP’s fee has steadily declined from the original 2.6 percent fee when SEWP I was launched nearly 20 years ago. SEWP’s growth has enabled the program to reduce its fee while also expanding customer services.
SEWP IV program sales remain strong, despite recent federal budget uncertainties. The program had sales revenue of $2.4 billion in fiscal year 2011, and sales are proceeding at about the same pace for fiscal 2012.
The seven-year SEWP IV program, which began in May 2007, has generated total sales of $9.9 billion though June 21, 2012. “We have about 10,000 customers, and we are used by every federal agency,” Woytek said. “We support our customers with tools and services, and with a framework that provides them with the flexibility to get what they need, but always within the regulations and the law. We help them do it right.”