The Department of Homeland Security is transitioning from its nearly 20-year-old approach to buying information technology (IT) services through a single multiple-award contracting vehicle to using multiple contract vehicles that are more targeted to specific capability portfolios while also taking advantage of existing government-wide acquisition contracts managed elsewhere.

“EAGLE Next Gen will not be a single contract vehicle, but will instead be a suite of contract vehicles,” Soraya Correa, the chief procurement officer at DHS, said on a Feb. 27 letter to industry that was posted that evening on the government’s procurement website. “EAGLE Next Gen will consist of the creation of a portfolio of DHS IT services contract vehicles with specialized, targeted scope in conjunction with balancing the use of existing Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs).”

DHS Chief Procurement Officer Soraya Correa. Photo: DHS

EAGLE refers to Enterprise Acquisition Gateway for Leading-Edge Solutions, which was first introduced in 2005 and allows the department’s customers to acquire IT services from a vetted pool of vendors. DHS spent more than $10 billion with industry on the first EAGLE contract and followed that up in 2013 with a potential $22 billion EAGLE II award to dozens of vendors in three functional categories: independent verification and validation (IV&V); IT program support services; and integration, software design and development, and operations and maintenance.

The Feb. 27 posting on the site includes a one-page PowerPoint slide showing five planned targeted DHS contract vehicles for IT services under EAGLE Next Gen. The contracts will be for agile development, cloud services, data center optimization, IV&V, and system integration services will be phased in, Correa said.

As of Feb. 4, DHS adopted six existing GWACs that will also be used as part of EAGLE Next Gen. They are the General Services Administration’s Alliant 2, Alliant 2 Small Business, 8(a) STARS II, and VETS 2, and the National Institutes of Health CIO SP3 IT Services/Solutions and CIO SP3 Small Business IT Services/Solutions.

The reason for the transition to EAGLE Next Gen is in part to avoid duplication of government wide contracts, which is being driven by the White House Office of Management and Budget, and to “prioritize initiatives such as migration to the cloud, or transition to Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions, and in optimizing our Security Operations Center presence across DHS” due to the need to modernize IT and be transparent, Correa said.

DHS will continue to use EAGLE II until it expires, which is set for September 2020, Correa said.

Later in March, DHS will announce plans for the future of its FirstSource II multiple award contracting vehicle, which provides a pool of vetted vendors for the purchase of IT hardware and software for department components and agencies.

Awards under the EAGLE contracts have covered a breadth of needs.

Correa said the contract vehicle has been used “to support operations at its data centers, in developing the latest in biometric entry and exit capabilities, in modernizing existing programs through agile software development, and in obtaining independent verification and validation of these efforts.”