Due to Agency IT priorities and toward maximizing job creation with the Recovery Act funds, USAID determined that the funding should be dedicated to the Global Acquisition and Assistance System (GLAAS) project.
GLAAS project funding contributes toward 180 full-time work years of employment for individuals in the Washington DC area, the majority of whom are small business employees. Recovery Act funding would be specifically used to procure those needed resources, providing the ability to retain critical systems development staff to provide additional functionality and to hire much needed system trainers and help desk support staff, thus creating a positive impact on employment while providing necessary support to GLAAS. Upon implementation, GLAAS will support USAID’s continuing effort to engage small businesses through acquisitions and assistance projects in support of the Agency’s mission.
The Recovery Act specifically identifies five goals as its purpose:
• Preserve and create jobs and promote economic recovery
• To assist those impacted by the recession
• To provide investments needed to increase economic efficiency by spurring technological advances in science and health
• To invest in transportation, environmental protection, and other infrastructures that will provide long-term economic benefits
• To stabilize State and local government budgets, in order to minimize and avoid reductions in essential services and counterproductive state and local tax increases
In an effort to align our overall agency plans with these Recovery Act goals, USAID has decided to use this funding to complete the rollout of its Global Acquisition and Assistance System (GLAAS). GLAAS is a new enterprise business system that will, for the first time, give USAID the ability to process more than $11.5 billion in contract and grant transactions worldwide. GLAAS is integrated with the Agency’s financial system (Phoenix). When GLAAS is fully deployed, it will enable USAID to provide complete, timely and accurate reports to OMB, Congress and other external stakeholders.
Investment in the GLAAS system is consistent with the Agency’s business modernization initiatives and meets the objectives of e-Gov. GLAAS is able to maximize interoperability and minimize redundancy through integration with a host of internal and external systems. Through the real-time integration of GLAAS with USAID’s financial management system, the Agency is able to provide inclusive, timely, and accurate reporting to better accommodate mandates and management of stakeholders’ data calls. GLAAS will provide real-time integration with the Agency’s financial system for posting commitments, obligations, and awards, as well as synchronization of vendor data. This system will also integrate with external government systems including FPDS-NG, FedBizOpps, FAADS, and Grants.gov, which will reduce user workload and simplify the acquisition and assistance process and provide appropriate data for “Recovery.gov.” Utilizing a single acquisition and assistance (A&A) tool will provide significant benefit to the Agency in terms of optimizing staff workload, deployment, project management, reporting, and legacy system retirement. GLAAS will allow USAID to handle its increased workload while preparing for current trends, which include: 1) increased competition mandated by Congress; and 2) the need for additional oversight as USAID increases its opportunities targeted to new partners, small businesses, and local and indigenous organizations.