Aaron Boyd, Federal Times 2:44 p.m. EDT May 3, 2016

The General Services Administration is known as the government’s landlord — currently managed under the Public Buildings Service — and the government’s buyer — through the Federal Acquisition Service. Now, GSA is staking its claim as the government’s technology innovation center with the creation of a new business line: the Technology Transformation Service.

The new business line will continue the work being done at GSA’s two primary innovation arms: the Presidential Innovation Fellows and 18F, part of the Office of Citizen Services and Innovative Technologies. Those groups have been focused on promoting ideas like agile development, open source — both as consumers and producers — and user-centric design.

The General Services Administration is known as the government’s landlord — currently managed under the Public Buildings Service — and the government’s buyer — through the Federal Acquisition Service. Now, GSA is staking its claim as the government’s technology innovation center with the creation of a new business line: the Technology Transformation Service.

The new business line will continue the work being done at GSA’s two primary innovation arms: the Presidential Innovation Fellows and 18F, part of the Office of Citizen Services and Innovative Technologies. Those groups have been focused on promoting ideas like agile development, open source — both as consumers and producers — and user-centric design.

Roth said the new service was created in response to agencies’ needs, just like the PBS for real estate and FAS for acquisition.“Today is the first day of a new era in our agency,” GSA Administrator Denise Turner Roth wrote in a May 3 blog announcing the TTS. “Just as we were the first agency to put the Internet on every desk 20 years ago and the first to move to the cloud five years ago, we continue to blaze a trail providing cutting-edge technology support to our partner agencies.”

“The Technology Transformation Service will help agencies figure out how to build, buy and share user-centered and emerging technology solutions,” she wrote.

The new line will be led by Commissioner Phaedra Chrousos, previously the associate administrator for the OCSIT/18F. Aaron Snow, 18F executive director, will serve as deputy commissioner.

While TTS takes the lead on emerging technologies, FAS will still be the primary business line for most IT acquisitions.

This isn’t the first time GSA has had a tech-focused business line. FAS was created in 2005 by merging the Federal Technology Service with the Federal Supply Service. However, the TTS’ focus on emerging tech and latest development best practices sets it apart from previous IT-centric services.

“By moving these programs into a new service, we are demonstrating a commitment to make agile, user-centered delivery of technology the way we do business moving forward,” Roth said.

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