Information Technology:

A Statistical Study of Acquisition Time

AIMD-95-65: Published: Mar 13, 1995. Publicly Released: Mar 13, 1995.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed federal information technology (IT) acquisitions to determine how various factors affect the IT acquisition process.

GAO found that: (1) the average time taken to complete an IT acquisition varies according to the procurement type, dollar value, and whether a bid protest is filed; (2) hardware, software, maintenance, and support services are the major types of IT resources being acquired; (3) contracts under $250,000 take an average of 158 days to award, while contracts $25 million or more take 669 days to award; (4) most procurements are awarded either as sole source or full and open competition contracts; (5) the average time taken to award IT contracts increases as the contract value increases; (6) protested contracts take longer to award than nonprotested contracts in every dollar strata; (7) large dollar contracts are much more likely to be protested; and (8) other factors such as competition type and evaluation methods also increase contract award time.

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