It may seem like a simple thing to fix — if the U.S. government wants more vendors to compete for contracts, just ask more companies to take part. However, those looking to reform the procurement process are running into snags that favor the status quo, and a new survey shows just how much money is wasted. A greater emphasis on open standards and boosting the role of CIOs are two possible solutions now being studied.
Federal agencies routinely pass up opportunities to improve information technology performance, and save money at the same time, by failing to seek vendor competition in the procurement process, according to a recent survey.
Federal IT professionals revealed that their agencies could save as much as $15.8 billion per year — about 20 percent of annual IT spending — by being more aggressive in utilizing multiple vendors in a more competitive environment for infrastructure projects.
The survey of 208 federal specialists was conducted in January by MeriTalk, an online community of public and private sector IT professionals.
Reporting on the survey in early March, MeriTalk said that 95 percent of respondents believe there are benefits to using more than one vendor in an area of their infrastructure, and 44 percent believe that adding a vendor drives down acquisition costs. However, five percent of agencies reported that their entire IT infrastructure uses just one vendor, and another 23 percent use just two or three.
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