Federal IT market draws vendor crowds

Federal IT market draws vendor crowds

ORLANDO, Fla.'It's no secret that the government IT market is growing faster than others. One result is that systems integrators and program managers are deluged with product vendors wanting a piece of that market.

James White, president of North Grumman Corp. Computing Systems of Greenbelt, Md., claimed 15 such calls every week.

'I respond to people who do their homework,' White said.

Don Brown, vice president of strategic initiatives at Computer Sciences Corp., said he gets four phone calls a day from IT vendors. GTSI Corp. of Chantilly, Va., was approached some 800 times in the past year, according to chief executive officer Dendy Young.

All spoke on a panel at a government solutions conference here, hosted by Gartner Inc. of Stamford, Conn. They concurred that the best way for a product vendor to break into the market is to understand the contracts the systems integrators are eyeing, and convey clearly to them how its product might be useful.

Michael Fox, vice president of sales and marketing at SRA International Inc. of Fairfax, Va., said he schedules appointments within 48 hours for vendors who know his company might be going after a particular contract.

'Integrators prefer [subcontractor] exclusivity to give them an advantage,' he said. Fox cited one Library of Congress project in which several competitors all bid software from PeopleSoft Inc. of Pleasanton, Calif. SRA alone bid with Siebel Systems Inc. of San Mateo, Calif., as a subcontractor, and won the contract.

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