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Added: Nov 18, 2011 4:19 pm Modified: Nov 22, 2011 7:58 amTrack ChangesRFI Purpose
The U.S. Department of Education (the Department) is issuing this request for information (RFI) as part of its market research efforts to identify potential sources with the technical capabilities in the area of design and deployment of "cloud" infrastructure. The objective of this RFI is to ascertain the level of capabilities and availability of potential vendors to provide infrastructure-as-a-service or platform-as-a-service for hosting the Department's mission critical financial management system: the Education Department's Central Automated Processing System (EDCAPS). Much like other federal agencies, the Department needs to continue providing effective information technology in support of the mission and work of the agency while facing the possibility of budget constraints and significantly fewer resources over the next few years. In anticipation of both an expected decrease in resources and the impending end of life for major elements of its existing EDCAPS infrastructure, the Department is assessing its options to transform its current environment into one that is more cost-effective, sustainable, and aligned with future business needs.
Figure 1 in the attached MS Word version provides a schematic of how the five (5) EDCAPS system are functionally integrated.
Financial Management Support System (FMSS)
FMSS is provided by Oracle Financials version 11.5.10 (11i). It is the Department's official general ledger and also includes functionality for budget planning and execution, funds control, receipt management, administrative payment management, internal and external reporting. The external reports include the financial statements mandated by the Chief Financial Officer's Act. The Department has also implemented the Hyperion Budget Planning module and is currently considering its options for upgrading to Oracle's version Release 12 of their federal financial management system.
CPSS supports the pre-award and post-award processes for all types of contracts, delivery orders, task orders, interagency agreements, small purchases and purchase card transactions. Requirements maybe consolidated at any level and multiple awards may be made from a single requirement. Awards are modified financially or administratively as necessary, until closed in CPSS. CPSS uses various means of posting and receiving procurement data and future enhancements will add web-based procurements. CPSS interfaces with FMSS, in real time, at the detail level, for funds check, commitments, and obligations. Batch files are exchanged for vendors, accounting codes, and purchase card payment files. Transactions includea combination of sub-procurement lines, multiple accounting lines and incremental funding. Data is stored to meet all Federal Government mandated reporting requirements such as the Federal Procurement Data System. The Department currently employs CACI, Inc.'s Comprizon.Suite as the commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) software package to provide CPSS functionalitybut has plans to replace the current CPSS system over the next several years.
G5 supports the Department's management of more than 10,000 discretionary grants, amounting to approximately $2.1 billion per fiscal year, as well as Formula and Block grants totaling more than $15.2 billion each fiscal year. The Department also disburses approximately $28 billion annually in grants and loans to approximately 14,000 recipient institutions. G5 handles grant planning, pre-award, award management and post-award of the Department programs including discretionary, formula, fellowship, and block grants. G5 also interfaces with other program office systems, referred to as program feeder systems, to process obligation and payment data. The program feeder systems typically support the planning, scheduling, and award processes performed by the program offices to manage their programs (e.g., Campus-Based and Pell). G5 includes functionality for preparing and submitting grant applications electronically and interfaces with Grants.gov Find and Apply functionality for programs using standard forms. G5 allows peer reviewers to electronically review applications submitted electronically to the Department, in their homes or offices. It also allows them to record their evaluations and scores and submit the same to ED electronically. This system affords Department staff the capability to maintain quality control by monitoring the reviewers' progress during the review process. Grantees are able to prepare and submit their Annual Grant Performance Reports to the Department via the Internet. G5 controls payments for the Department's programs, including payments for grants and direct loans and other program-related obligations. It also serves as a subsidiary to the FMSS general ledger for program-related obligations, payments, and expenditures, and interfaces with FMSS at the summary level for funds control and general ledger postings.
The Nortridge Loan System (NLS) is a commercial-off-the-shelf loan-servicing financial package that accommodates the Department's specialized needs for the following:
Functionality includes receivable, collection and reporting activities, and financial transaction capabilities. NLS serves as an external subsidiary ledger to the FMSS general ledger for these activities. An electronic interface exists between NLS and the FMSS that provides for the transfer of general ledger level data from NLS to the FMSS on a daily basis.
The Department's Travel Management System (TMS), E2 Solutions, is a solution provided by Carlson Wagonlit Government Travel that is hosted outside of the Department as part of GSA's government wide eTravel initiative. It provides an end-to-end process including an integrated on-line booking engine, travel authorization, and vouchering process. The system is currently in a steady state lifecycle through November 2013.
The Department's Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) is responsible for all design, development, testing, installation, operations, and maintenance of EDCAPS. The system is accessed via the Department's network, which is owned, operated, and maintained by Dell. These essential network services will continue to be provided by Dell. The current EDCAPS infrastructure is located in Dell's Plano Texas Data Center and Dell is responsible for its maintenance.
The EDCAPS environment and infrastructure supports multiple AIX hardware platforms, including but not limited to this basic system configuration below.
Attachment A (embedded in the MS Word version of this RFI) contains diagrams and matrices that provide an overview of the number of CPU's, memory, and servers being utilized to support the EDCAPS Technical Architecture. Companies who respond to this RFI should note that this information is provided solely as background information and should not be interpreted in any way to imply that the Department is intending to reproduce its current EDCAPS environment one for one in a cloud environment. The Department is focused on transforming its current EDCAPS environment to meet its future requirements.
Sun Hardware & Software
Third Party System Support Applications
The following software constitutes third party support applications running on AIX UNIX:
Application Name Type Server/OS Users
The backend database for FMSS, G5, CPSS, Single Sign-on, G5 Meta-data, and EDCAPS Data Store is Oracle 10g, Release 1 and 2. Oracle 10g is configured using Oracle Real Application Clusters, with the database residing on a General Parallel File System (GPFS) file structure. We are anticipating upgrading to Oracle 11g in FY12.
Information Being Requested:
Responses to this RFI will help shape the Department's strategy for obtaining infrastructure services, as well as any subsequent formalized requests for proposal. The information provided in response to this RFI should include the following:
c) High level summary describing how, if at all, security requirements were impacted through migration to the "cloud", especially those involving compliance with applicable Federal Government mandated security requirements (e.g., protection of Personally Identifiable Information (PII)) and a description of what risk management measures were adopted to ensure compliance with applicable Federal Government security requirements. Have you applied to or completed the Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP)?
d) High level description of how system availability was maintained or improved following migration to the " cloud" to include a description of the methods employeed to ensure system availability metrics are met.
e) High level description of how, if at all, system performance was impacted by the distance (e.g., more than 1,000 miles) between the location of the "cloud" environment and the location of the system users.
f) High level description of the organizational change management approaches (e.g., user training, support team training, etc.) that were used to ensure smooth transition to the "cloud" for users, system support personnel, etc. during transition and post-transition operations.
g) High level description of what technical support capabilities are provided for systems users and system support personnel working in the "cloud" environment.
h) High level description of the cost impact of moving to the "cloud" environment.
i) High level description of any immediate cost savings (e.g., through reduced equipment cost, reduced labor cost, etc.) resulting from migration to the "cloud" environment.
j) High level description of how return on investment was determined.
k) High level summary of the impact on life cycle cost resulting from migration to the "cloud" environment.
RFI Submission Requirements
Technical questions and industry responses shall be submitted via e-mail to: Stephen Scheffer at Stephen.Scheffer2@ed.gov. Technical questions must be received no later than 4:00 p.m. eastern standard time on November 30, 2011. RFI responses must be received no later than 4:00 p.m. eastern standard time on December 12, 2011. All material submitted in response to this RFI must be unclassified and properly marked.
550 12th Street, SW, 7th Floor
Washington, District of Columbia 20202
Gary L. Weaver,
Original Posted Date:
November 18, 2011
November 22, 2011
Dec 12, 2011 4:00 pm Eastern
Original Response Date:
Dec 12, 2011 4:00 pm Eastern
September 28, 2012
Original Set Aside:
D -- Information technology services, including telecommunications services
518 -- Data Processing, Hosting and Related Services/518210 -- Data Processing, Hosting, and Related Services