The below blog was written before the draft RFP was issued. Reading the below blog will help you learn a historical perspective on the major predecessor contract – OPM TMA.
GSA is developing a new multiple award IDIQ contract called Human Capital and Training Services(HCaTS). Actually, it isn’t truly a new requirement. Instead, HCaTS will attempt to pick up where OPM’s Training and Management Assistance Program (TMA) was once incredibly busy and the cancelled Customized Human Resources Solutions (CHRS) RFP. OPM discontinued CHRS in February 2014, as CHRS did not fit with “current and changing requirements” of the government.
We could comment all day on what went awry with CHRS. However, let’s focus on the future spiced with a little bit of background for those of you who are new to this opportunity.
April 2014 marked the start of the formal relationship between OPM and the GSA to revitalize the formerly thriving TMA contract through the creation of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between GSA and OPM to create a replacement contract. This was briefly named the Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative—Human Resources Services and Training (FSSI—HRST). Recently, GSA moved to HCaTS. Strategic sourcing has something of a stigma associated with it.
Let’s consider the timeline of events that led us to where we are today.
What will HCATS do?
The HCaTS program is very likely to be similar to the original TMA program. The original TMA contract had two overarching service areas – human capital and training. Note the table below and specific areas of solutions in each service area.
Spending on TMA
Between fiscal years 2007 and 2014 nearly $3.5 billion was spent across the TMA contracts. Demand for human capital support outpaced requirements under training by a figure of about $1.9 billion to $1.6 billion. TMA was most active during the period of FY2010 through FY2012. Even when the contract was continued on in a new contract (to nearly all of the previous incumbents) in order to cover what was planned to be the CHRS competition, the work remained although to a much lesser degree as we can see in FY2013 and FY2014.
Who’s Who in the Zoo
If we look at the contract history, we will find that the majority of the work is given to a small number of companies. Over 50% of the spending for requirements under human capital was performed within the three top contractors. Similarly, about 47% of the spending for requirements under training was performed by the top 3 contractors. The ten companies with the overall highest contract sales are illustrated below.
We have very few surprises here. Many of these businesses are names that we know and we would expect to see in this list. However, this top 10 list is far from the end of who may (or will certainly) pursue HCaTS in whatever form it emerges. Stand by for more content to come on the known and probable competitors for HCaTS! These businesses might be your foes or your friends…probably a little bit of both. Co-opetition is a wonderful concept.
Thoughts on HCaTS
HCaTS is an attempt by GSA to pick up where TMA left off and its lapsed protégé CHRS. One can assume that many of the requirements previously from TMA will be in HCaTS. Human capital and training needs are plentiful in the federal contracting market so prospective pursuers of HCaTS should be bullish. Even a degraded pool of a former average $805M per year in opportunities (based on peak volume from FY2010 – FY2012) is a significant area of opportunity.
We would like to believe that HCaTS = TMA. This is a nice crutch to use, but past is not necessarily prologue. Why?
- TMA has slipped considerably in volume, but does that mean requirements went away? Of course not. Instead, OPM’s previous customers have found other means to get help.
- There are alternatives – TMA was hardly the only option for human capital and training solutions. It was just a good one. Think about the gap and the alternatives. Say what you will about our federal government. If there is some requirement and the resources exist to satisfy it, some action will be taken. The business has migrated…it hasn’t disappeared altogether.
- Spending is increasing, right? Very amusing. The new normal is a tighter spending environment. This is not to declare that everything is doom and gloom, Eeyore. A big market is still a big market.
- Can we get the band back together? Can OPM work with GSA get the customers back? To some degree, absolutely. Can they get the demand back to the same level as before? I’ll believe it when I see it.
While GSA works to develop and publish a draft RFP along with some industry day, there is no reason for those of you in the human capital and training market to stand idle. Actions for you to consider:
- Study the previous TMA incumbents – Do you have meaningful relationships with one or more of them? Engage them! What is their position on HCaTS?
- Consider your potential role on HCaTS – If human capital and training is your niche, do you pursue this as a prime contractor or as a subcontractor? Which makes the most business sense for you and why?
- What do you have to offer that HCaTS wants? What’s your secret sauce? Why should anyone want to buy from you? Yes, this is elementary. I get it. Is there some rock star level thing that you do relevant to HCaTS? You better think about it now before engaging anyone.
Stay tuned for future content on HCaTS! We’re examining specifics of likely competitors (and not, it is not solely based on who advertised interest via FBO…give us some credit, please) and alternatives to HCaTS that might impact its success.
As always, feel free to contact us here with any questions.
UPDATE December 12, 2014: Based on recent conversations with OPM who is behind this requirement, they expect a draft RFP and industry day sometime in January 2014 with a possible RFP release in February 2014.
© FedSavvy Strategies and FedSavvy Strategies blog, 2012-2015. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to FedSavvy Strategies and FedSavvy Strategies blog with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.