One of the larger, if not the largest, grants management system in government is run by the NIH. It’s called the Electronic Research Administration (eRA…yes, with a small ‘e’) and you can read all about it here. NIH is currently recompeting the systems engineering services contract that supports it; the FedBizOpps posting is here. (Full disclosure: We currently work on several projects around eRA.)
The NIH grants process is very complex and the systems that support it share that complexity. Consequently, eRA has always led the way in many aspects of federal grants management systems. iEdison is the government’s only inter-agency post-award grants reporting system, for example, while the eRA Commons has (I think) the most intricate and complex user and institution management functionality of any agency. (Another disclosure: TCG designed and built iEdison.) NIH tends to face common challenges before the majority of agencies, and has to adapt and develop systems rapidly as a consequence, often demonstrating some interesting innovations as a result.
Where eRA goes, others tend to follow, both in terms of process and technology. So this is a project and procurement worth watching.
(I’m catching up on all my blogging this morning. Can you tell?!)