Pentagon’s DEOS Award Could Be Coming Sooner Than Expected

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An award for the Pentagon’s multibillion Defense Enterprise Office Solutions contract could come by August.

The Pentagon’s multibillion-dollar Defense Enterprise Office Solutions contract could be awarded as soon as August despite soliciting bids from industry in April.

As recently as June, Defense Department Chief Information Officer Dana Deasy told reporters DEOS would likely be awarded a month or two after JEDI, but the timeline has accelerated.  

Multiple industry sources tell Nextgov the procurement—bid through the General Services Administration—has been straightforward and smooth, with few issues to slow down the military’s acquisition of cloud-based common communication, collaboration and productivity capabilities.

The DEOS acquisition—which contracting documents indicated will have an $8 billion ceiling over 10 years—stands in contrast to the rockier road faced by the Pentagon’s more famous cloud procurement, the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, which has a $10 billion ceiling over a decade.

Bid out 9 months before DEOS in July 2018, officials have targeted a late August award for JEDI, which faced two pre-award bid protests from IBM and Oracle, and a pre-award lawsuit in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, also from Oracle. The Pentagon prevailed in all three JEDI protests and has managed thus far to weather a constant stream of criticism over its single-award nature and other decision-making. Meanwhile DEOS—also a single-award contract—has received little industry pushback and produced no legal protests. While several systems integrators submitted bids for JEDI, Microsoft—by virtue of its Office 365 solution—is all but guaranteed to profit significantly on software licenses under DEOS.

DEOS is not just a singular contract, but rather the first of the Pentagon’s three-phase Enterprise Collaboration and Productivity Services, or ECAPS. DEOS will establish a single baseline cloud architecture across military branches and combatant commands, providing the kind of enterprisewide email, calendar and collaboration tools common in the private sector. The Defense Department will bid out the second and third phases, which will include voice, video and assured voice services, after DEOS is awarded.

When reached for comment, the Pentagon declined to provide an estimate on the timing of the DEOS award.