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GSA Begins 2021 With Release of Two RFIs, Draft Solicitation for Polaris; Keith Nakasone, Allen Hill Quoted

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The General Services Administration started calendar year 2021 with the release of a draft request for proposals for the Polaris governmentwide acquisition contract and two requests for information for machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities and a plan to come up with a new contract vehicle for professional services, Federal News Network reported Tuesday.

For Polaris, GSA will ask vendors to secure certification under the Department of Defense’s Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification program.

“We included the CMMC language within the master level so it’s within scope. At the order level, agencies can add additional requirements for levels 1-5 depending on their mission requirements. We want to leave that flexibility in the mission program and learn over time alongside with the Defense Department,” said Keith Nakasone, deputy assistant commissioner for acquisition within the office of information technology at GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service (FAS).

GSA has asked companies for feedback on current AI and machine learning capabilities and will accept responses to this RFI through Jan. 29.

“We are keeping technology offerings that work currently on GWACS, but we are making some tweaks to emphasize emerging technologies like AI, edge computing and ‘anything as-a-service’ so customer agencies can tap into the small companies that provide these expertise to drive further IT modernization and improve service delivery,” said Allen Hill, acting deputy assistant commissioner for category management in FAS.

FAS is collaborating with ACT-IAC to conduct listening sessions with companies in early February for the next-generation services indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity contract.

“The goal is to complete an acquisition strategy that achieves the outlined objectives for this new contract program by fiscal 2021 end. After the acquisition strategy is completed our plan is to issue the solicitation in fiscal 2022, with awards and contract use beginning in fiscal 2023,” according to a GSA fact sheet on the next-gen services IDIQ.

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