Discover IT

Resources for Project Teams

Review Before You Buy

Before embarking on an acquisition, review the Digital Services Playbook and TechFAR Handbook to learn best practices.

  • The Digital Services Playbook: 13 key “plays” drawn from successful practices from the private sector and government that, if followed together, will help government build effective digital services.
  • The TechFAR Handbook: Resources on how to use contractors to support an iterative, customer-driven software development process, as is routinely done in the private sector.

USDS Procurement Field Guides

These Procurement Field Guides are intended to help participants in the government acquisition community with general knowledge, tips, or common practice methods that will help implement digital service strategies.

These are living documents, not policy or procedure. We encourage crowdsourcing and contribution to these guides as the body of knowledge around this topic increases or becomes more refined. Each guide has a contribution link to our github repository that facilitates this process.

Take Some Training

The links below include online courses and videos to help you learn best practices and build skills around new acquisition strategies. You’ll learn valuable lessons from acquisition experts that highlight the opportunities, methods, and challenges around digital services acquisition.

  • Agile Acquisition 101: This video seminar features examples of where agile acquisition has been successfully implemented in the Federal Government
  • AGL Academy: A community effort by Agile government professionals to help educate and empower those who seek to implement Agile processes into their own agencies
  • Digital Acquisition: Learn how to Understand the four phases of a digital service acquisition; Differentiate digital service acquisitions from more traditional procurement procedures; and Apply agile techniques and best practices to federal contracting
  • Digital IT Acquisition Professional Training: The USDS and the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) have partnered to develop a digital IT acquisition professional community (DITAP). The first component of this community is a training and certification program for contracting officers, which is currently in its second round of piloting this effort. The goal of this effort is that this development program will be offered in multiple agencies, by various training providers, or by the Federal Acquisition Institute. There is currently no open course at this time, but check back to see more information about upcoming offerings of this program.

Listen to a Podcast

Behind the Buy is an informative podcast that shares stories told by members of the Federal acquisition workforce who have successfully executed best practice IT contracting strategies.

Behind the Buy Podcast #1: Mark Naggar Interview
Behind the Buy #2: Driving Agile IT Procurement
Behind the Buy #3: A Simple and Intuitive Approach for IT Procurement
Behind the Buy #4: Leveraging an Agile and Iterative Approach to Help Save American Lives
Behind the Buy #5: Managing and Delivering Digital Services for Agile Software Development
Behind the Buy #6: Managing and Delivering Digital Services for Agile Software Development

U.S. Web Design Standards

Listen to Mollie Ruskin and Julia Elman explain how the US Web Design Standards make government websites more consistent and easier to build.

Read a Case Study

The following case studies move beyond fundamentals and provide first-hand experiences, struggles, and accomplishments of fellow acquisition professionals

Next: Discuss IT