A new Intelligence and National Security Alliance report has found that slowdown in acquisition processes as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic is greater across the intelligence community than the Department of Defense and civilian agencies.
The report by INSA’s Acquisition Management Council says there are three major acquisition-related challenges faced by IC since the beginning of the pandemic and those are inexperience operating in a virtual environment, difficulty gathering industry teams to work on proposals and communicate with their government counterparts and national security risk associated with the aggregation of controlled unclassified information.
AMC cited acquisition successes in the paper, including IC’s move to rework contract timelines to award as many as contracts as possible by the current fiscal year’s fourth quarter and efforts to accept and speed up execution of unsolicited proposals in support of pandemic response efforts.
The paper also recommended best practices that IC agencies should carry out, such as developing contracting processes that enable procurement work to continue in a virtual environment, investing in a more stable network infrastructure to support virtual work and increasing collaboration with the Pentagon and other agencies to implement their best practices to facilitate rapid acquisition processes.
Howard Weitzner of Accenture (NYSE: ACN), Mary Quinn of Deloitte and Jen Sovada of MissionTech Solutions led work on the INSA report. Weitzner serves as chair of AMC, while Quinn is the council’s vice chair.