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CHIPS Articles: DISA Conducts Forecast to Industry

DISA Conducts Forecast to Industry
By DISA News - December 1, 2016
The Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA) conducted its annual Forecast to Industry event Nov. 17 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland.

The purpose of the event was to outline the agency’s way ahead for fiscal year 2017 and 2018, and to provide insight into opportunities for industry to partner with DISA to help the agency achieve its objectives.

Approximately 900 participants attended in-person and approximately 2,400 watched via live streaming video.

The event kicked off with an opening video that highlighted the portfolio management and goals in key mission areas – computing and storage, mobility, networking technologies, unified capabilities, and cyber defense.

“DISA continues to push forward and get into new frontiers, and we are very, very excited about being able to work with our mission partners,” said DISA Vice Director Air Force Maj. Gen. Sarah E. Zabel, who opened the event. “We really need your help to continue to provide a very agile, flexible, robust, reliable global information infrastructure; to be able to provide global command and control for our warfighters and our troops in the field; and to be able to bring in new innovations.”

The agency’s new major work areas were identified as Defense of Defense (DOD) Cyber Range, building out an in-house DOD Information Network (DODIN) lab to replicate the entire DODIN; the Joint Service Provider, the organization that provides information technology (IT) services for most of the Pentagon; the National Background Investigation System (NBIS), the new information technology system to conduct background investigations for federal employees; DOD Mobility; and the increased role of the White House Communications Agency.

Zabel also addressed industry’s concerns over the use of lowest price technically acceptable (LPTA) contracts as a source selection methodology.

“DISA does not have a default source selection criteria. We do not assume LPTA. We do not assume best value trade off. We look at every single procurement and [evaluate] what is suitable,” said Zabel. “We will continue to use LPTA where it’s appropriate and we will continue to use best value trade off where that is appropriate.”

As the senior procurement executive, Zabel approves all acquisitions exceeding $10 million. “I always talk to the teams about which methodology they recommend and why.” The reason the agency goes with an LPTA-type of acquisition is often because the teams cannot find anything of value to trade off, she added.

Throughout the day, participants heard from DISA senior leaders and program executives about their acquisition opportunities. All briefing slides are available on DISA.mil.

In addition to the presentations, there were also networking opportunities. DISA capabilities and program offices hosted tables and a ‘Meet the Seniors’ session where DISA seniors leaders were readily available to interact and engage with the industry attendees.

Video recordings of the event will be made available at a later date. To receive an email notification, sign up at https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/USDISA/subscriber/new?topic_id=USDISA_6. Additionally, individuals are encouraged to follow DISA on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/usdisa and Twitter https://twitter.com/usdisa.

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