Spending on the GSA Wireless BPAs

Published: January 20, 2016

Contract AwardsGSAWireless

Growth in federal agency spending on wireless technology expanded strongly in fiscal 2015, but which agencies spent the most and which vendors won the most business?

Readers may have noticed a blog entry posted on January 15, 2016 by Mary Davie, Assistant Commissioner of GSA's Office of Integrated Technology Services, which stated that federal agency spending on wireless technology climbed significantly in fiscal 2015. The entry, entitled FY 2015 Sees Agencies Saving Dollars on Wireless, provides compelling details on agency spending through the GSA’s Wireless Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative Blanket Purchase Agreements, a contract vehicle awarded to AT&T Mobility (Contract #GS00Q13NSA3000), Sprint (Contract #GS00Q13NSA3001), T-Mobile (Contract #GS00Q13NSA3002), and Verizon Wireless (Contract #GS00Q13NSA3003) in June 2013 to provide agencies with wireless devices and related services. Increasing the use of strategic sourcing to cut costs and increase efficiencies has been a priority for federal agencies so the growth in use of these contracts surely ranks as a success story.

Among the details Davie discussed the 500% growth in fiscal 2015 spending over fiscal 2014 is the most eye-catching. Here is the spending data from the BPAs graphically represented.

The spending increase is due, Davie writes, “to greater demand for better management and savings as agencies integrate mobile technology into their IT enterprise [as well as] due to agencies transforming their work environments with more mobile and flexible options.” Five-hundred percent is a lot of growth, but Davie doesn’t parse the data into spending by agency or by vendor. So, to offer some insight into those aspects of the spending here are some details.

Wireless FSSI BPA Spending by Agency

Starting with spending by agency, the chart below shows spending by the top 10 agencies since the inception of the Wireless FSSI BPAs in mid-FY 2013. The data includes spending in the first quarter of FY 2016.

The GSA spent the most on wireless technology using its own vehicle, followed by the SEC and HHS. Averaging the totals, the top 10 agencies spent about $3.12M apiece. Also, as a subset of the data, it is worth noting that the Department of Defense spent $837K, $429K of which was spent by DISA and $206K of which was spent by the Washington Headquarters Service. Unfortunately, details on the devices and services purchased are not available thanks to changes made to that make it difficult to download that data by associated contract number.

Wireless FSSI BPA Spending by Vendor

Moving next to a competitive perspective, spending by vendor breaks down as follows. Again, Q1 of FY 2016 has been included in this data set:

AT&T has won the lion’s share of orders on the BPAs with all $8.1M of GSA’s obligations going to it for wireless technology. Additionally, the SEC spent $5M of its total $6M with AT&T and HHS spent $1.6M of its total $5M with AT&T. Verizon’s wins on the vehicle have come primarily at HHS, where it earned $2.7M in obligations. DOT also awarded $2.3M to Verizon, as did Interior, which obligated $1.6M. Lastly, AT&T won $726K in orders and Verizon won $103K at the DoD.

Looking Ahead

Industry can garner a sense of where spending on wireless technology is heading by looking at obligations by quarter. In FY 2014, spending in Q1 totaled $270K. In Q1 FY 2015 that total jumped to $5.1M and in Q1 of FY 2016 total spending amounted to $3M. Curiously, given the typical 90 day reporting lag, spending data for DoD is included in that figure. So, if Q1 is any indication, it looks like spending on wireless technology will be nearly as strong in FY 2016 as it was in FY 2015. That’s good news for the ramp up to GSA’s Mobility 2.0 follow-on vehicle.