Two New Sales Opportunities at Commerce That Are NOT Census-Related

By Jessica Parks, Market Intelligence Analyst

Don’t let the Department of Commerce’s understandable focus on the 2020 Census distract you from other sales opportunities within the cabinet-level agency. The need for better data analytics is opening up initiatives at two of its sub-agencies, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Fundamentally, both USPTO and NOAA have requirements around the processing, management and analysis of large volumes of data. If your technology can help them meet these requirements, you will have a foot in the door for a procurement you and your competitors may otherwise have missed.  

USPTO – Records Management and Data Capture

A draft RFP released by USPTO in February called for ways to digitize paper records and pull data from patent applications. This extensive records-capture initiative will require data capture and cleanup, and a means to search patient records. An official solicitation based on this request has yet to be released, so vendors and systems integrators still have time to develop innovative solutions.

USPTO CIO Jamie Holcombe was quoted as far back as November 2019 that, for the agency, “Data is king.” This means striking a balance between protecting intellectual property and making that data available for use. USPTO users must have a solution that grants different levels of trust and leaves room for machine learning and automation for massive data searches – particularly searches of unstructured data in digitized documents.

NOAA – Application Development for a Sea Turtle Atlas

One of the largest and most unusual projects for NOAA for 2020 will be the development of a sea turtle atlas. This atlas is intended to bring together multiple data sources on sea turtles in the Gulf of Mexico and will require visualization capabilities.

A new contract with no incumbent, the initiative has a value to vendors estimated between $1 million and $2 million. The solicitation is anticipated to be released in Q3 of FY2020and is currently labeled as a competitive and unrestricted solicitation.

It’s safe to presume that the sea turtle atlas project with continue for a number of years. Vendors should position themselves for opportunities in data integration, capture, management, visualization and cleanup.

The Department of Commerce houses an eclectic group of agencies, each of which is trying to make better sense of its data. Start by considering how your analytics and data management tools can help with the two initiatives detailed here, then use that thinking to position your company well for other Commerce opportunities.


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This is an adaption of a commentary originally published in Washington Technology. The complete original commentary can be found here.

About Jessica Parks
Jessica Parks is an analyst with the Market Intelligence team at immixGroup, providing actionable analysis to help technology suppliers shorten their sales cycles. She holds a B.A. from the College of William and Mary and an M.A. in political science from UNC Chapel Hill.

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