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CPARS: It’s a Ratings Game

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Centre Law & Consulting


By Angel N. Davis,

As a government contractor, you should understand that the Contractor Performance Assessment Report (CPAR) may very well be a predictor of how your organization might fair with future business opportunities. But don’t panic; having a better understanding of the ratings and the value of the CPAR will help you to develop a strategy for the best possible outcome.

Understand the Ratings

Before reviewing your CPAR, it is essential that you understand what each rating means as well as the evaluation factors. The ratings may appear to be self-explanatory; however, a satisfactory rating may be perceived as a “low rating.” The CPAR ratings, as well as the evaluation factors, are defined in Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) Part 42.1503 – Procedures. If you are not satisfied with your evaluation, you can request to meet with the Assessing Official and request that the rating is changed. A meeting may be requested, in writing, no later than seven days following your receipt of the CPAR notification. Be prepared to provide substantial evidence to support the justification of a higher performance rating. If you are unsuccessful in negotiating a changed rating, you should enter a non-concurrence along with your grounds for a higher rating. The initial assessment will be re-reviewed, and a final determination will be made as to whether the rating should be changed. You have fourteen (14) calendar days following the Assessing Official signature date to submit comments before the evaluation is made available in the View Performance Records section of CPARS. You have a total of sixty (60) calendar days to submit comments.

Understand the Value

Your future customers need to know how you’ve performed. The CPAR provides past performance references that enable government agencies to identify organizations that have satisfactorily performed capabilities needed to support future requirements. The demonstration of strong past performance provides the government with the necessary trust and confidence to select the best-qualified contractor. The government VALUES, past performance.

Develop a Strategy

Yes, you need a #CPARStrategy. Believe it or not, you have the opportunity to influence your CPAR! Open and honest communication with your customer will help you prepare for whatever rating you receive. You must develop a communication plan that ensures your customer is aware of any issues that occur during the performance of your contract that might have a significant impact on the scope, deliverables and budget. Engage early and throughout the performance of the contract. The relationship you establish and maintain with your customer will allow for a mutual understanding of how you are performing on the contract and will allow you to remedy any disparities.

If you’d like assistance in developing your #CPARStrategy, please contact us!


About the Author:

Angel-Davis Angel Davis, CFCM
Contracts Manager

Angel N. Davis has over thirteen years of experience in federal contracts management.  She is a Certified Federal Contracts Manager (CFCM) and is currently President of the Tysons Chapter of the National Contract Management Association (NCMA). While completing the NCMA Contract Management Leadership Development Program (CMLDP), Angel successfully pioneered the NCMA Tysons Women In Leadership Initiative.


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