The General Services Administration is taking a three-pronged approach to procurement to best flourish in a period of tightening government budgets, while keeping a tight eye on sustainability, Administrator Martha Johnson said Thursday.
Johnson said the agency is looking at the environmental impact of all procurements to make sure it aligns with the Obama administration’s zero environmental footprint goal for the agency, looking at the true life cycle costs of all purchases and assuring procurements fit in with all necessary government requirements.
“Sustainability is not an add on in my eyes, but is core to the reframing of how we do procurement,” Johnson said speaking at the Acquisition Excellence 2012 conference at the Grand Hyatt in Washington D.C. “We are serious about this word.”
When it comes to technology, Johnson said GSA is looking hard at increasing the use of shared services, echoing the sharing trends being seen elsewhere in the economy to help the government save money and leverage the large amount of assets at its disposal.
Some of the key areas for sharing include networks and hardware, email, business systems and more.
Another part of that will be mobility and virtual services.
“I firmly believe that a high-performance government is a mobile government,” Johnson said. “It’s a new world out there where citizens deserve services from the government the way they go about everything else.”
To help the government become more mobile, Johnson said is answering three challenges: finding the right devices, doing away with the legacy systems and silos that slow government and security.
Johnson also mentioned OASIS, the new professional services integrated solution with an information technology focus, as an example of the types of tools the agency is looking to create in order to find better ways to procure services for the government.