GPO releases draft RFP for digital content system

The Government Printing Office released a draft solicitation Tuesday seeking a chief contractor to integrate and manage the agency's massive content management and data storage modernization project.

GPO released the draft for the Future Digital System for content management (FDsys) about a month behind its admittedly aggressive schedule. The agency took into account suggestions from vendors who, after attending an industry day this fall felt the process should be vetted more thoroughly, an agency spokeswoman said.

Comments on the draft are due Jan. 20; GPO is planning another industry day about two weeks later.

FDsys, a $29 million project, will digitize nearly every federal document published since the birth of the nation, starting with the 1787 Federalist Papers, transforming the way GPO collects, authenticates, stores and shares federal documents.

Earlier this year, GPO said it wants the system to reach initial core functionality by summer 2006.

In the draft, GPO said it is seeking a vendor that will serve as the 'master integrator' to oversee and manage the FDsys project. The integrator will be responsible for developing and integrating the various technologies, including some that are commercially available, into the system.

'[T]he ultimate objective for the [master integrator] will be to integrate various components, technology and applications of FDsys functional clusters and subsequently deliver a world-class information lifecycle management system,' the draft said.

Specifically, the master integrator will work within GPO's technology management structure to select the components and software for the system, develop a work plan for completing the project, and help the agency test and train employees on the system.

At this point, GPO plans on issuing the final RFP for the master integrator in March and awarding the contract in April, the GPO spokeswoman said.

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