AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink brace for GSA's upcoming EIS telecom contract

A group of the largest telcos, including AT&T (NYSE: T), Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL), will soon be turning their attention to the General Service Administration's (GSA) Enterprise Infrastructure Solutions (EIS) contract, the follow-on to the multi-billion dollar Networx telecom contract.

GSA released the draft request for proposals last weekend for EIS, which it says is part of the agency's Network Services 2020 strategy. It is expecting comments on the draft through March 31.

According to the draft that was obtained by Washington Technology, the draft outlines 13 service areas that EIS will require bidders to cover: data, voice, contact center, data center service, cloud, wireless, commercial satellite, managed service, service related equipment, service related labor, cable and wiring, access arrangement, and national security and emergency preparedness.

In addition to laying out service requirements, the draft looks at pricing constructs that the GSA says are a hybrid model. This hybrid model takes into account the fact that major telcos like AT&T are migrating away from legacy copper and TDM-based technologies to all IP and fiber.

GSA said it plans to release the final RFP this June.

Networx, which consists of an Enterprise and Universal section, is set to expire in 2017, but will be extended until 2020 to give government agencies time to transition from Networx to EIS.

By simplifying the ordering process, GSA hopes it can alleviate any issues which came up for agencies when they transitioned from FTS-2001 to Networx. What's more, GSA wants to attract a larger pool of contractors than what Networx has. Today, Networx Universal is held by AT&T, Verizon and CenturyLink, while Networx Enterprise is held by AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink, Sprint (NYSE: S) and Level 3. 

For more:
- Federal Computing Week has this article
- Washington Technology has this article

Related articles:
CenturyLink taps cloud expert Meehan to lead its public sector division
CenturyLink's government chief Diana Gowen is retiring
Level 3 wins 300-site connectivity contract with federal judicial system
GSA awards AT&T Government Solutions $18 million telepresence contract

This article was updated on March 3 to list correct contract holders for Networx Universal and Networx Enterprise.