The federal government has thrown open the door for telecommunications service providers to join its new whole-of-government telco procurement marketplace.
The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), which is tasked with managing much of the federal government’s ICT procurement, released a request for tender (RFT) on 25 November calling for suppliers to apply to become sellers on its Telecommunications Marketplace.
The new marketplace is being established to replace and expand on the services available under the government’s existing Mobile and Telecommunications Services panels.
According to the DTA, the new marketplace arrangement is expected to make sourcing telecommunications products and services simpler, clearer and faster for both buyers and sellers.
The marketplace, set to be launched in early 2020, will provide federal, state and local government agencies with access to new technologies and services, including:
- data carriage services
- internet carriage services
- fixed line voice carriage services
- managed network services
- unified communications services
- managed voice services
- dark fibre services
- contact centre systems
- mobility services
- satellite services
- managed router services
The DTA initiated a request for information (RFI) in early 2019 in its efforts to replace the expiring Mobile Panel, the expired Telecommunications Management Panel and the current Telecommunications Services Panel, with a new single Telecommunications Panel.
Since then, the proposed panel has taken on the form of a marketplace, mirroring other procurement arrangements managed by the DTA, including its Hardware Marketplace and its proposed Cloud Marketplace panel (CMP) sourcing arrangement.
The DTA detailed in October its plans to completely overhaul its procurement of cloud services with the launch of a new marketplace next year. The agency is preparing to replace its existing Cloud Services Panel (CSP), which it first launched in 2015, ahead of its expiry in March 2020.
In its place will be the proposed CMP, which aims to cater to the rise of ‘Anything-as-a-Service’ (XaaS) business models and buyers’ demand for more “evolved” offerings.
Announced in a discussion paper published on 17 October, the new CMP will aim to create a more “flexible” sourcing arrangement that will “accommodate industry developments and technology advances in cloud computing”.