GSA is considering the addition of a unified special item number (SIN) for Cloud Computing Services and posted an RFI to on July 9, 2014 to collect information from industry and stakeholders. The purpose of the unified SIN is to “improve the way that GSA offers cloud computing services through IT Schedule 70, increase visibility and access of cloud computing services to customer agencies, and to provide industry partners the opportunity to differentiate their cloud computing services from other IT related products and services.”

The goals of this RFI are to 1) gain feedback from industry and stakeholders on the proposed unified SIN and 2) better understand how schedule holders are selling cloud services via IT Schedule 70. Currently, commercial cloud services are being sold on Schedule 70 through several different SINs, but GSA believes the “cloud computing services market is sufficiently mature to offer differentiated and vetted cloud computing services through a single SIN.”

What I thought was cool about this RFI is that it poses questions three questions to federal buyers, to collect their feedback and insights on the acquisition of cloud-enabled IT services:

1. How does your agency typically procure cloud services? For example, what contract vehicles are used, and what contract types?
2. Does your government organization expect that this proposed SIN will improve the transparency and ease of use of acquiring cloud services through IT Schedule 70?
3. Do you have any input to the questions posed to industry in Section C?

It would be awesome to use the “power of the path” to crowdsource a high-quality, well-informed response to these three questions. I have created a Google Doc to coordinate the collection of information from anyone who would like to engage. As with all Learning Path activities, practitioners can earn CLPs for their participation (see the Activity Log for details on how to submit your work for CLPs).

Responses to the RFI are due on August 6th at 4pm, so there is plenty of time to add value  to GSA’s effort while earning CLPs for contributing to open learning!