IRS deputy procurement chief says $7.5M ceiling for contracts awarded as part of pilot could rise

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The IRS may increase the $7.5 million ceiling for contracts awarded through a pilot program for streamlining acquisition, Deputy Chief Procurement Officer Guy Torres said Tuesday.

The program, which is called Pilot IRS, provides phased funding to deploy innovative tools addressing internal challenges.

IRS was already expanding the program from nine projects — deploying tools like scanning-as-a-service and optical character recognition  — to include other emerging technologies of interest, when the agency received an influx of funds from the omnibus spending bill in March. Raising the Pilot IRS contract ceiling would help speed the time to define requirements and increase buy-in from customer chief financial, procurement and information officers.

“That’s a work in progress,” Torres said, during the ACT-IAC Imagine Nation ELC 2022. “And that’s still being discussed between myself, [Enterprise Digitalization Director] Harrison [Smith] and a few other folks within the federal government.”

Pilot IRS exemplifies the procurement shop’s desire to take calculated risks — as do efforts to improve its downselect process, expand training and engage with industry about streamlined strategies, he added.

Torres’ messaging to IRS senior leadership has remained consistent in his first year.

“Contractors are a force multiplier,” he said.

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ACT-IAC, Guy Torres, IRS, Pilot IRS