Jump to content
The Wifcon Forums and Blogs

Desparado

Members
  • Content count

    299
  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

0 Neutral

About Desparado

  • Rank
    Silver Member
  • Birthday 10/29/1965

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://
  • ICQ
    0

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Interests
    Golf

Recent Profile Visitors

18,980 profile views
  1. How competitive are 1102 jobs?

    If you're willing to be mobile and do a good job (or at least make people think you are), then you can move pretty quickly up the ranks. I know this person who was a GS-7 in 2003 (after 14 years as a GS-4 and GS-6 in non-contracting work) and within 11 years became a GS-15 (you have to judge whether you consider that fast or not). He wasn't in an intern program or anything. He simply applied and moved when opportunities that sounded good came up. It can be done...
  2. Both gentlemen are correct. I was with GSA for 4 years over 2 GSA Schedule contracts and I can confirm that they are right.
  3. I don't know that I would say a non-DoD agency is "less of a challenge". The challenges are just different. Organizational structure (or lack thereof), ambiguity in policy, and other things can make a non-DoD agency very challenging. I actually found working for DoD much easier because of the structure. Everything was already set in place. Granted, it stiffled innovation, but that's a whole different challenge. I recently had an employee leave my current agency because she couldn't deal with the lack of structure and went back to DoD.
  4. I have worked for the Army, the VA, GSA and the EPA and each experience was different. I do believe having experience at different agencies is career enhancing, but then I've known people who have stayed at a single agency and moved all the way up (so no help there, sorry). I am currently a GS-15 and I do believe changing agencies helped me get to this level. I started with the Army entity and primarily completed post support contracts and purchase orders. The grades there were very limited. At GSA the grades were much higher but I found the work much less rewarding and took a downgrade to leave. I've done two separate stints with the VA and found the work rewarding and depending on the office there is upward mobility available.With the EPA I found it rewarding although I have learned that being with a small civilian agency definitely comes with its own problems and many DoDers have difficulty in adjusting to a non-DoD environment (I consider the VA a DoD wannabe). Again, I apologize that this may not be helpful but I believe each individual has unique experiences and what works for one may not work so well for another. As far as additional skills goes the place I learned the most was with the Army where they had a "everyone does everything" approach so I never knew when I walked in the door whether I'd be buying a thermal imager for the fire department, a $2M construction project, training services or buying some commercial products. There were also opportunities to learn about cost contracting there. At the GSA, I learned about Schedules contracting but nothing else. It was very limiting. At the VA they put you in a silo where you only buy one type of thing. Yes, that makes you a specialist at that one thing but doesn't offer you the diversity of knowledge you need to grow in contracting. Would I recommend it? At the very least, since you are with the VA, if you are in a silo situation I would recommend that you move around between the teams to learn about the various types of contracting. I don't know that you'd need to leave the VA to grow but having perspective and experiences from different agencies can be helpful, although not absolutely necessary. So I guess... yes... I would recommend it, but know that you have as much of a chance to going to a worse situation than you do a better one.
  5. Section 801 of 2018 NDAA

    I apologize as I wasn't aware of that rule...
  6. Section 801 of 2018 NDAA

    Vern brings up an interesting point. Would FedBid or companies like them truly be considered a "marketplace"?
  7. Process of Excluding Small Businesses

    An RFI or Sources Sought Notice is usually given quite a bit of weight in the protest decisions I've read. I instruct my staff to do a fair amount of market research and if it doesn't appear that there will be two small business contractors that will respond with a fair and reasonable price, be sure to do a Sources Sought Notice before making the decision to go out full and open.
  8. SAP Modification PNM

    What was the reason for the modification? Did you enter into negotiations for some reason? If something happened that caused you to go into negotiations, I can see where your agency/boss may require a PNM. A PNM for "all modifications" is overkill and just stupid.
  9. In regards to meals in the field for military persons, it depends on how they are fed. If they are fed by MREs, there is no need for plates or plasticware. If it is by T-Rations, those are prepared in kitchen trucks and yes... the military provides paper plates and plasticware to use the consumption of the meal. I don't think that this decision will change that one bit.
  10. CPARS comments

    .... or maybe overworked and understaffed and like all administrative activities, it doesn't receive the priority from management that pre-award and award activities do. It's all about obligating the money and after that senior management doesn't care unless there is a problem.
  11. NDAA for FY 2018

    1, 2 and 3. Pretty much in that order.
  12. CPARS comments

    You are right in that it is supposed to be, but I am facing a situation now where a bad contractor contested their rating. As the reviewing official I reviewed what they wrote and the contract file, spoke with the contractor and the contracting officer and then made a decision to uphold the Unsatisfactory rating. The contractor then proceeded to get political appointees involved and now all heck is busting loose. Sad, but true.
  13. Interview Guidance

    Keep in mind that many interviewers today use "performance based questions" (yes, the hair on the back of my neck stood up when I heard that title) where instead of asking you a question like, "Walk me through source selection", what will be asked is something like... "Tell me about a time when you used source selection procedures on a large contract. What was that contract for and what processes did you use to accomplish the work". The idea behind this is to not only find out what you have done, but to get an indication of what you will do in the future. So if you're the nervous type jot down some large or unique acquisitions you've done so they are fresh in your mind in case you are asked question of this nature.
  14. Using GSA in price analyses

    As someone who has spent time with both DoD and GSA, I have always found DoD's view of GSA's pricing to be interesting. Now that I know how GSA gets its pricing and how they determine a price fair and reasonable (not the lowest) it is interesting to me that DoD has such an objection. Now, I totally agree that you may not want to use GSA pricing to determine the lowest price available, but I personally think that it should be perfectly acceptable to use for a fair and reasonableness determination. Fortunately, other agencies aren't held by these same rules.
  15. When I worked at GSA I lobbied to have the MOT name changed because it is very misleading. Because it would have to go through the rule-making process, I lost every time. Sad...
×