GSA searching for right people to run category management

The General Services Administration is hiring a new assistant commissioner and subject matter experts to help move the category management initiative forward.

This story has been updated with a new deadline for GSA’s job announcement.

The General Services Administration has talked a lot about the potential of the Common Acquisition Platform over the last nine months. Now, it is on the hunt for the right people to bring all of these key pieces together.

GSA is looking for an industry expert to become the assistant commissioner for the Integrated Acquisition Environment (IAC) office.

The agency also is looking for category management subject matter experts to bring innovation to the acquisition of commodity products and services across 10 areas.

Anne Rung, the Office of Federal Procurement Policy administrator, and Tom Sharpe, the GSA Federal Acquisition Commissioner, wrote in a blog last week that these 10 areas make up about $270 billion, or two-thirds of all federal procurement.

“Specifically, [the] Common Acquisition Platform provides government buyers with comprehensive information about existing contract vehicles from multiple agencies, current market trends and expertise, transactional data and good practices that will help them navigate the cluttered acquisition marketplace. Within CAP, GSA has already launched ‘Category Hallways’ or online sites — for several categories and sub-categories, like administrative support, education and training, IT hardware, IT software, professional services and small package delivery categories,” Rung and Sharpe wrote. “With OFFP’s direction and collaboration, GSA is taking an even larger role in implementing category management throughout the federal government. In the coming months, GSA will coordinate with the Strategic Sourcing Leadership Council and other key players in the federal acquisition community to create guidelines for executing category management. These future guidelines will address how to independently validate cost savings, create the right performance metrics, and benchmark contract solutions to pick the right one.”

For the assistant commissioner role, GSA is expecting this Senior Executive Service (SES) manager to oversee and manage the IAE portfolio, which includes development and implementation governmentwide shared services, including the System for Award Management (SAM), for acquisition and assistance management functions for the Chief Acquisition Officers (CAOs) Council.

“Whoever becomes the next assistant commissioner will lead a tremendously dedicated and talented staff that is nimble, mission focused and technically savvy ​— ​it’s ​one of the most fun and challenging jobs I’ve ever had,” said Kevin Youel Page, who held the position until November when he became deputy commissioner of the Federal Acquisition Service. “The people are great, the work is strategic — acquisition data and analytics are central to the IAE mission — and the opportunity for innovation, to include working on the development and launch of the Common Acquisition Platform, is unparalleled.”

GSA says the IAE platform supports more than $60 billion a year in spending.

“We are looking for an exceptional leader who will provide strategic and change leadership to ensure that the vision, mission, values, goals and objectives are integrated into all other FAS and GSA initiatives,” GSA wrote in the job announcement.

The job announcement closes Feb. 18.

“We want someone with as much domain expertise as we can get, and above all a leader who can inspire great things from 360 degrees,” Youel Page said.

For the category management positions, GSA is offering 2-to-4 year term appointments and is looking for more than a decade of expertise with category management. The person must know the supplier side of category management and have expertise in strategic sourcing.

GSA said it’s looking for specific expertise in:

  • Data Analytics to support CM
  • e-Commerce and online auction tools
  • Information technology
  • Hardware
  • Software
  • Consulting
  • Outsourcing
  • Security
  • Telecommunications
  • Professional Services
  • Travel (Airline supply chain, e-Commerce usability)
  • Transportation freight (e-Commerce portal)
  • Credit card services
  • Administrative support
  • Facilities and real estate
  • Facilities management and industrial products

GSA said it started reviewing resumes on Jan. 5 and will continue to review potential applicants over the next couple of weeks.


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