Improved and Expanded Use Could Provide Procurement Savings for Federal Information Technology

February 27, 2013

In September 2012, GAO reported that many large procurement agencies were in the early stages of implementing strategic sourcing and had achieved limited results. For example, in fiscal year 2011, the Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, Energy, and Veterans Affairs accounted for 80 percent of the $537 billion in federal procurement spending, but reported managing about 5 percent of that spending, or $25.8 billion, through strategic sourcing efforts. These agencies reported savings of $1.8 billion--less than one-half of 1 percent of federal procurement spending. Further, most of these agencies' strategic sourcing efforts did not address their highest spending areas--including some information technology (IT)-related services--which may provide opportunities for additional savings. While strategic sourcing may not be suitable for all procurements, leading companies strategically manage about 90 percent of their procurements and report annual savings of 10 percent or more. When strategic sourcing contracts were used, federal agencies generally reported achieving savings between 5 and 20 percent.

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