FITARA Scorecard changes: What you need to know

By Tara Franzonello, Program Development Manager

How will changes to the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act affect government agencies and OEMs?

On Jan. 20, 2022, the Subcommittee on Government Operations discussed FITARA, the Modernizing Government Technology Act, and the Federal Information Security Modernization Act of 2014. The purpose was to consider how to modernize the FITARA Scorecard, since many agency grades have remained stagnant. 

Rep. Gerald E. Connolly, chairman of the Subcommittee, suggested that lack of progress was because of the methodology used to calculate metrics. Connolly believes there should be new ways to hold agencies accountable for IT modernization, including moving to the cloud.

What is changing? Focus change to security

Among the changes, Data Center Optimization will be retired, because all agencies have had an A grade that category. In its place, there will be an increased focus on cybersecurity. 

The Subcommittee suggested that FITARA goals should align with the priorities found in the Administration’s Executive Order on Cybersecurity. This includes zero trust architecture, securing cloud computing environments, protecting high-value data and addressing supply chain incidents. According to Congress, compliance should move beyond “checklists” to practices including real-time cybersecurity monitoring. 

As the FITARA scorecard becomes more granular in articulating categories in the areas of IT modernization and cybersecurity, we will likely see agency CIOs developing strategic and financial roadmaps to achieve progress against these goals. OEMs and IT solution providers need to pay close attention to these priorities and how they are funded.

Why should you care?

More than half of the $100 billion spent on IT annually by the federal government still goes towards maintaining legacy systems. The Technology Modernization Fund and working capital funds established by Congress are critical to helping agencies realize progress in this area. So OEMs and IT service providers that sell cybersecurity solutions should pay attention. 

If you have a tool or solution to help your government customer agency meet its cybersecurity goals, you’ll need to follow how the FITARA methodologies and metrics evolve.

Technology providers should track congressional and agency funding mechanisms for IT modernization as priorities are defined. With the next FITARA scorecard due this summer, understanding agency performance and where you fit in will help make sure your projects get funded.

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Learn more about immixGroup’s contracts and how we make it easier for government end customers to acquire the technology they need.

This blog was adapted from a commentary that originally appeared in Washington Technology. For the full commentary, click here.

About Tara Franzonello
Tara Franzonello is responsible for management, compliance and negotiations of immixgroup’s GSA Schedule contract as well as management of GSA programs and initiatives. Tara brings twenty years of experience in contract administration and program management in the public sector marketplace and has successfully negotiated GSA schedule contracts as well as state and local contract vehicles. She holds a B.A. and M.A. from Providence College.

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