The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) is using bailing agreements, a contracting method, to test out commercial products before finalizing purchases, C4ISRnet reported Thursday.
Bailing agreements allow agencies to test technologies out, make assessments and send feedback to the commercial source before finally issuing contracts.
NGA first issued three bailment agreements in 2019, made another five in 2020 and now plans to have enacted 20 by the end of 2021.
Dave Gauthier, head of commercial geospatial intelligence at NGA, said bailment agreements have helped the agency access and integrate commercial technologies at faster speeds.
For example, the agency used this method on a contract for Geospark Analytics' artificial intelligence platform, which forecasts threats based on open-source intelligence. NGA tested and assessed the tool via a bailment agreement before issuing a contract.