As Privia users who have attended recent joint sessions with Bloomberg Government know, multiple-award contracts (MACs) are proliferating across government. Bloomberg Government identified nearly 1,200 active MACs in fiscal 2011, up from fewer than 500 in fiscal 2006. The government bought more than $130 billion in goods and services through MACs in fiscal 2011. That's a quarter of all federal purchases. New MACs are being awarded every week.
Of course, only companies selected in advance as primes or team members can win work through MACs. Work comes in the form of task orders for services and delivery orders for products competed among the pre-selected MAC companies. We expect more federal work to be awarded through MACs over the coming years, in part because agencies are consolidating their purchases on central MACs. Homeland Security made more than half of its technology purchases last year through its FirstSource and EAGLE MACs. The Air Force is aiming to do the same through a set of seven MACs under the Net-Cents 2 program. The first order was awarded last week on the Net-Cents 2 MAC for enterprise architecture work.
Watch T4 at Veterans Affairs and PILLARS at the Navy's SPAWAR for similar consolidation pushes. As big MACs continue to rise, understanding how those contracts work and deciding which teaming partners to pick is becoming more important by the day for companies looking to expand their business with federal agencies.
-- Brian Friel, Bloomberg Government