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NASA Hires Hewlett Packard for IT Support

by: Matthew Potter
January 4, 2011

Category: Business Line, Companies, Congress, Contract Additions, Contract Awards, Events, Federal Budget Process, Hewlett Packard, IT, logistics, NASA, northrop grumman, Northrop Grumman Corp., Services, space, States, Virginia | RSS 2.0

The U.S. Government has tried different ways to provide necessary IT support to its employees. One of its major goals has been the ability to keep up with technology with refreshing desk and lap top computers while also providing the necessary mobile technology. Attempts have been made to do it completely in-house. Other times the purchase of hardware and software has been separated from the actual management and support. A third way is to pay contractors over several years to manage everything with the idea that they will update technology routinely.

All of these different ways have their pros and cons as well as cost implications. Sometimes it means that too much of the wrong hardware and software is bought or not updated quickly enough. Some Federal agencies are looking at web based applications such as Google (GOOG) Apps or other equivalent packages with the idea it might save money. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) has decided to hire Hewlett Packard (HP) to manage its IT needs for up to ten years.

The contract awarded to HP’s Enterprise Services unit could be worth up to $2.5 billion if all options are exercised. Enterprise Services is what EDS became after HP acquired them in 2008. EDS has a history of providing this type of support contract to various government agencies over the last few decades.

The contract has a four year base and two three year options. One of the goals of this contract and a justification for its length is that it will allow HP to provide multiple updates to the NASA computing base. The longer contract will also allow HP to control costs by allowing better coordination and purchasing of new equipment to replace existing stocks.

While these types of contracts are not uncommon they do face the problem of schedule delays in implementing updates and controlling costs. Virginia issued a vast contract to Northrop Grumman (NOC) to take over management and integration of all of their state government systems that has seen cost growth and schedule issues as well as attempts at re-negotiations.

That contract was much more complicated then HP’s with NASA as the state was trying to unify its IT systems as well as update equipment. The more standard type such as this is much less complicated but it does illustrate the size of that market if Federal agencies want to use this approach.

Photo from njt1982’s flickr photostream.

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  1. Tweets that mention NASA Hires Hewlett Packard for IT Support | Defense Procurement News -- Topsy.com on January 4th, 2011 4:23 am

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Dagpotter. Dagpotter said: NASA Hires Hewlett Packard for IT Support | Defense Procurement News http://bit.ly/giYuRR #in […]

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