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In-Sourcing at Year’s End

Image: Pavel Losevsky

Where does the government’s  in-sourcing strategy stand, especially at the end of a year that saw serious proposals to freeze federal pay and even shrink the federal workforce?

Well, according to a report on Federal Computer Week, skeptics shouldn’t count in-sourcing out anytime soon.

“By all accounts,” according to FCW, “officials remain committed to bringing work back into agencies and keeping contractors on a shorter leash.”

However, the White House’s top procurement official told an audience of contracting officers and government officials last week, “in-sourcing is not a goal.”

Rather, it’s a solution to a problem, Dan Gordon, administrator for the Office of Federal Procurement Policy said, according to a report on GovWin.

“We need to be sure that when we use contractors, we use them for work that is appropriate. They shouldn’t be performing inherently governmental functions,” he added. “But addressing that problem should not lead to massive in-sourcing.”

But Gordon was quick to point to out  some positions need to have government input. “Too often, I visit agencies and find that in their IT programs, for instance, there is no federal employee who understands the agency’s systems,” he explained. “Not one. That’s not appropriate and safe for the government.”

So what does the future hold for in-sourcing?

Lou Crenshaw, a principal at Grant Thornton, told FCW he predicted adjustments to the government’s once-grand strategies.

“The word ‘in-sourcing’ will dry up and be replaced with ‘multisector workforce,’ ” he said, which means a strategic blending of federal workers and contractors.

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