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Mark Schwartz: Agile Contracting Model Helps CIS Speed Up IT Service Acquisition

Mark Schwartz
Mark Schwartz

Mark Schwartz, chief information officer of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, has said CIS has adopted an agile method to help expedite the acquisition of information technology systems and services within the agency, Federal Times reported Thursday.

Schwartz said the agency’s Flexible Agile Development Services contracting model has shorter terms for contracts and seeks to evaluate the performance of the contractors’ software development groups on a regular basis, Aaron Boyd writes.

Under the FADS structure, CIS assesses vendors through clear-cut performance metrics, including a requirement to share ideas with other contractors, to determine whether to increase or maintain a company’s share of the contract, Boyd reports.

“So we wound up with a sort of ‘coopetition’ situation where we had contractors who wanted to show us how great they were but couldn’t do it at the expense of other contractors,” Schwartz said.

He told the publication that CIS was able to implement the FADS model in compliance with the Federal Acquisition Regulation.

“The FAR requires that we have requirements for the competition… but that doesn’t mean system requirements,” he said.

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