SSA Solicitation: Disability Analysis File Development and Construction IDIQ

Notice ID: 28321322R00000003

“The purpose of this contract is to create annual DAF files for SSA to use in supporting internal and external research, analysis, and demonstration activities. The contractor will produce the annual DAF files with accurate data and in a timely and efficient manner. The development and construction of the DAF files for 2021-2025 will follow the processing routines developed for earlier rounds of the DAF, making within-scope modifications as necessary to adjust for changes in the underlying data systems and extracts and the changing needs of researchers using the DAF. The contractor will also provide limited custom extracts and technical assistance to SSA and non-SSA users of the DAF in an ongoing basis, as needed.”

“Over the period 2020-2025, SSA is implementing changes to the source files that we use for the DAF.  Over this period, SSA is transitioning from IBM mainframe files under the z/OS 64-bit operating system to the cloud server environment for storage and processing. This transition has already started. From the DAF perspective, we expect the change will mainly affect the storage and processing environment. This will imply changes to the how we access, modify, save, and manage the data files we use and create under DAF construction. However, we expect to be able to utilize the same basic processing steps and SAS construction programs, adapted to work in the SAS server software in place of the SAS mainframe platform. The new framework will be faster and easier to use than the current IBM mainframe interface and processing methods. As a consequence of these changes, the processing under this contract will need to evolve as well…”

  1. DAF development and construction (DAF21)

(Task Order 1)

The services described in Task 9 “Potential Transitional services to a new contract” were also included in the contract for the DAF20 Contractor. As such, the contractor should expect the DAF20 Contractor to provide these services at the start of this acquisition.

  1. Assess new DAF21 data needs and maintain DAF update log (Task Order 1)

Once award is made, the contractor shall obtain a copy of the DAF request log and all prior “DAF Assess Data Needs” memos from the COR.

The contractor shall maintain the DAF request log (see Section B) and update it any time the contractor receives a request for a change to DAF data from a DAF user.

Prior to the initiating a new round of DAF data, the contractor shall prepare an email message for the COR to send to DAF users that outlines the proposed changes to data elements in the DAF, including data marts (if any), and asks for other suggested changes by DAF users. The COR will contact members of the DAF user group to solicit ideas for potential changes to the DAF. The contractor will coordinate with the COR to add any proposed changes to DAF from the users group. The contractor shall also review prior “DAF Assess Data Needs” memos and identify prior requests that remain under consideration.[1] The contractor shall assemble these prior and new requests into a memo style report for the COR. This report shall describe the requests, assess the complexity and cost of meeting the requests, and make recommendations on which requests, if any, to accept. After receiving COR comments and decisions on DAF changes and the order of priority, the contractor shall update the “DAF Assess Data Needs” memo with the final decisions on proposed changes and those to be implemented, if any, for the next DAF round. The contractor shall deliver the final version of the memo to the COR in electronic form.

The contractor shall submit final version of the “DAF Assess Data Needs” memo by the date shown in the Schedule of deliverables in Section F, for the DAF21.

The contractor shall then implement all agreed upon changes to the DAF21.

  1. Develop and submit DAF21 finders (Task Order 1)

The Contractor shall use the information in the final “DAF Assess Data Needs” memo, the previous DAF, the DBAD and CER files to construct the DAF21 master finder file, and sub-finder files as necessary, for the new DAF in a manner that is consistent with the process outlined in Volumes 8 -11. The contractor shall submit the finders to the COR. Currently, the Office of Research Evaluation and Statistics (ORES) is responsible for completing these requests. The contractor shall closely follow the finder schedule (e.g., work with the COR to obtain the anticipated return dates for the finders and maintain a log to track the progress of the finders) to assure that the processing follows anticipated timelines. The contractor shall inform the COR if any specific finder request in the finder process deviates by more than 1 week from the anticipated timeline. The contractor shall pull extracts directly from those source files to which they have access.

The contractor shall report progress on the finder process of the DAF21, as appropriate, in the memo-style monthly progress reports.

  1. Construct and Test DAF21
    1. Construct DAF21 (Task Order 1)

Following the steps described in more detail in Volumes 8 -11 contractor shall work directly on SSA mainframe computers, and in the cloud server environment as SSA implements the EDW transition, from SSA offices in Washington, DC or other location authorized by the COR.

The contractor shall develop the DAF21 in 2022 to include new Title 2 and Title 16 beneficiaries with disabilities and to add the most recent year’s data to the longitudinal histories.

In addition to the SAS versions of the DAF constructed under this step as detailed in Volumes 8 -11 , the contractor shall create one SAS version back-up copy of the DAF in SAS format and one version of the data in a format that can be read by Section 508 compliant data analysis software (for example, a flat (EBCIDEC) format).

As with the initial DAF file, the contractor shall create and store these additional copies of the DAF on SSA’s mainframe computers. The contractor shall report progress on DAF21 construction, as appropriate in the memo-style monthly progress reports. The contractor shall construct the DAF Core Files by the date shown in the Schedule of deliverables in Section F, for the DAF21.

  1. Testing and validation of DAF21 (Task Order 1)

Throughout the DAF21 construction process, the contractor shall implement the testing and validation protocols developed for earlier rounds of the DAF as described in Volumes 8 -11. As necessary, and in consultation with the COR, the contractor shall add to these protocols.

The contractor shall report progress on DAF21 testing and validation, as appropriate in the memo-style monthly progress reports.

The contractor shall complete testing and validation by the date shown in the Schedule of deliverables in Section F, for the DAF21.

The findings from the DAF21 testing and validation shall be reported in Volume 6 of the DAF documentation, “Validating the DAF21 against Other Sources” in a manner consistent with the most recent DAF round at…

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