Zain Ahmed, vice president of civilian and law enforcement sales at CenturyLink, has said that COVID-19 disruptions impacted the flow of orders under the General Services Administrationâ€™s $50B Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions contract, Fedscoop reported Tuesday.
Ahmed told attendees at a prior virtual event that agency pressure to rapidly address telecommunications modernization needs â€œputs a lot of risk on the industry to provide an accurate responseâ€ and that agencies have not provided â€œclear directionâ€ to contractors.
In addition, Ahmed said the Department of Defenseâ€™s solicitations based on lowest price technically acceptable procedures serve as â€œquick fixes that really donâ€™t offer much value".
â€œNothing changed around the EIS transition schedule,â€ he noted. â€œThatâ€™s static, and weâ€™re all marching toward that. There are some issues coming with COVID-19. Itâ€™s getting delayed because people arenâ€™t in the office; people arenâ€™t collaborating how they used to.â€
CenturyLink is working to implement wide-area network communications throughout agenciesâ€™ data centers and field offices as part of the EIS award, according to Campbell Palmer, solutions architects manager for public sector at CenturyLink.
The Government Accountability Office previously reported that all of the top agency spenders for the EIS contract intended to complete the transition by May 2023. GSAâ€™s initial deadline was scheduled for Sept. 30, 2022.