The Department of Defense (DoD) has developed an automated contracting system called the Defense Automated Contracting System (DACS). DACS is designed to standardize and streamline the procurement process across the DoD. It is an electronic system that automates the entire contracting process from solicitation to contract award and closeout. The system enables the DoD to manage all contract-related activities electronically, including the creation of solicitations, the evaluation of bids and proposals, and the awarding of contracts. DACS also provides real-time access to contract information and enables users to track the progress of contracts from start to finish. The system is designed to reduce the time and cost associated with the contracting process and to improve the accuracy of the data. DACS is used by all branches of the DoD and is available to all contractors.
The Standard Procurement System
SPS is an offshoot of the DoD’s enterprise information management (CIM) initiatives in the early 1990s and is intended to provide standard business processes and data management across different procurement communities, including:
- Outposts, camps and stations
- stock control points
- Main Weapon Systems
- contingency hiring
The Standard Acquisition System initiative began in 1994 with a directive from the Director of Defense Acquisition to standardize the then approximately 70 acquisition systems in use on a single platform. In August 1996, the SPS contract was awarded through a competitive process to American Management Systems. The contract directed AMS to build the Standard Acquisition System through an incremental process on top of the company’s existing Acquisition Desktop – Defense (PD)two) app.
SPS is one of the first DoD software acquisitions using Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR AWAY) Part 12 – Acquisition of Commercial Items the rules. One of the main drivers behind SPS was the use of off-the-shelf commercialor baby crib, Software. the software is licensed rather than purchased outright, and at the time it marked a major shift in the DoD’s acquisition strategy. While the DoD had prior experience in software licensing, it revolved around desktop computing (operational systems, office automation products, etc.) or back-end servers (mainframe operational systems, relational database management systems, etc). SPS is an enterprise system and is licensed for 43,000 hiring officers and other procurement professionals at DoD sites around the world.
The deployment of the SPS faced several challenges, including a 2002 stop-development order from the US Government Accountability Office (GAO). The program resumed after establishing an internal requirements framework, automating its integration capabilities, improving product documentation, and implementing a shift from a client-server architecture to a web application architecture.
The SPS program has received numerous awards, including Federal Computer Week’s Top Fed 100 Award (2003), the Grace Hopper Technology Leadership Award (2003), and CIO Magazine’s CIO Enterprise Value Award (2005).
In 2008, SPS was deployed on more than 23,000 desktops worldwide and processed more than $131 billion in fiscal year (FY) 2006, up from $59.0 billion in FY 2004
As of 2020, the DoD Standard Procurement System (SPS), deployed using the Procurement Desktop-Defense (PD2) application, is still widely used by many agencies, although the changing technology environment and age has led to the intent to retire, which has been postponed until at least 2020.
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