Recently, Andy Flick, Director Cloud Services at ViON was interviewed by Government Technology Insider about the value that a Marketplace can bring to public sector organizations.
As public sector organizations embrace agile acquisition and buying IT as-a-Service a Marketplace can help streamline the process and provide structure through governance. Read on to find out what Andy had to share.
Government Technology Insider (GTI): Federal acquisition and procurement professionals are eagerly searching for solutions that will streamline their jobs and safeguard the budget. What’s available to them today to support agile acquisition?
Andy Flick (AF): There are many agencies that have embarked on the journey to change the way in which they buy IT. By far the most significant developments have been made by agencies that have moved into contracts where IT capacity is provided, on-premise as-a-Service. These single award contracts generally span five to 10 years in length – a base with additional option years – and they use Federal Acquisition Reform (FAR) provisions for commercial item acquisition and electronic ordering. The contracts provide absolute control over ordering, eliminating the potential for violations of the Antideficiency Act. These contracts require the service provider to provide an automation platform for the government to use for ordering and requires agencies to build governance and oversight into the process.
GTI: Share with us why the Marketplace is different and how it helps agencies with acquisition?
AF: Marketplace is a purpose built automation and governance platform used to streamline ordering, billing, reporting, and service management. ViON provides agencies access to Marketplace so that our team and theirs can collaborate using the same data sets and processes. We then create custom approval workflows that both ViON and agency personnel use to transact, monitor, and control ordering, provisioning, reporting, and SLAs. Our platform design and functionality was based on the sum of our experiences with the Department of Defense, Civilian, and state government agencies and the unique requirements of those customers.
GTI: What do agencies need in order to use the Marketplace?
AF: ViON’s Marketplace is provided at no additional charge to our customers. Marketplace is hosted in the ServiceNow Government Community Cloud and is accredited at FedRAMP High/DoD impact Level 4. We take cybersecurity very seriously and for that reason we implement and operate under each agency’s cybersecurity requirements to achieve an Authority to Operate (ATO) accreditation for each customer.
GTI: What other benefits does it bring to agencies?
AF: One of the greatest benefits of the Marketplace is that it brings together all the data an agency needs to achieve predictable, repeatable processes that significantly and positively effect outcomes. Moreover, the Marketplace also automates and simplifies non-value added tasks like asset management and maintenance tracking and renewal that distract agency employees from mission-critical tasks. Agencies typically have multiple systems for each of these elements and the data sets within those systems can be difficult to assemble into dashboards from which data-driven decisions can be made. The Marketplace is also invaluable when it comes to producing reports to comply with FITARA and other governance requirements agencies must meet in any given year. Our goal in creating the Marketplace is not only to simplify acquisition, but to empower agency workers so that they can focus on the value-added tasks, while we take care of the metaphorical paperwork.