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Neil Roberts

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About Neil Roberts

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  1. The following is based on what I would want on the receiving end. I am not specifically seen as a qualified management guru or HR expert, so feel free to discount anything I say, but here it is: 1. I would explain that I would like to talk about what the company owner's view is regarding goals, objectives, approaches and so forth. 2. Make sure you convey that accurately. 3. Explain your approach to implementing the owner's view but make it clear that you are (I hope) flexible enough to go along with different approaches that accomplish the owner's view. 4. I personally would hate hearing conclusions, like “you are weak.” I do like to hear concrete examples of what or how I did something, why this was viewed by you as not fully supportive of the owner's view and/or your view. Listen to my explanation and then respond with alternative approaches on how or what you would have done, and why. If my approach now seems to be ok, say so! 5. Consider the possibility that East Coast and West Coast may have different styles. 6. Set some mutual goals, agendas and regular review dates to keep in touch “just because,” if not previously established. 7. After, break bread and maybe have a drink or two. Best of good fortune to the three of you!
  2. I would ask the program office for the details behind the 40K per year and include that estimate in the RFQ. I assume the details are based on so many tanks of a certain type gas. I would also list the names of all 50 gasses and for each, the type of delivery system (e.g., tanks/bottles and size) . I would ask each lab for past known usage details and include that in the RFQ. You should have a purchasing system that requires a requester provide a requisition with sufficient details to support a purchase.
  3. Used parts in general concern me because doing so may adversely impact compliance or risk with requirements included in such clauses as Warranty, Counterfeit Goods, Patent Trademark and Copyright, Intellectual Property, and Acceptance and Rejection and Inspection Clause. You may look for those in your contract. I would not do so unless the highest official in the company for Quality, Program Management, Engineering and Property Management signed off. If the prototype was intended to "prove" something to be built and delivered just like it, will it be built with new or used parts? I would be sceptical that it proved it for new parts. Perhaps there is some rationale based on a better description of what the prototype is, whether it is controlled by a contract specification or drawing, whether a used part meets those requirements and how it is "consumed" in test and whether it is ever really built again. I am doubting that money would actually be saved in the long run. You have a cost contract. Is a used part really your best efforts (which is the essence of a cost type contract)?
  4. I believe a reasonable protest argument could be made if the submitted question pertains to the RFQ and there was no communication back to the potential bidder that the question will not be answered. The RFQ seemed like it invited questions after the closing date. A bidder might have a reasonable expectation that a pertinent question would be answered, and at least an expectation that the Government would have reviewed the question for its pertinence to decide whether to answer it. which apparently it did not do. Bad faith could be argued in my view. A bidder may reasonably be still waiting for an answer or a negative communication before submitting a bid. The fact that there seems to be no end to the questions makes it sound like the RFQ has understanding challenges. In my view, the Government can stop all post closure questions by re-issuing the RFQ stating that no questions are permitted at any time because the Government has determined that the RFQ is robust. However, it does not appear to be robust to some number of bidders.
  5. Is it contemplated that A will issue a subcontract to B? If so, are handling fees consistent with A's CAS Disclosure Statement or practice? If not contemplating a subcontract, does A contemplate handling the transaction as an inter-organizational agreement, and if so, why?
  6. To clarify, Puzzled, your company is the prime contractor and your company is required to provide COTS software to the Government as its end item, which your company designed and developed?
  7. FAR 52.204-21 can give you a flavor for what "safeguards" might mean in 52.239-1, even if 52.204-21 is not included in the contract...more research needed.
  8. I can't think of a business purpose for doing that. However, in my experience from a prime contractor view, some prime contractors have "automated" procurement systems that are setup to align with the most stringent government contracts for non-commercial end items. As a result, commercial item subcontracts may be defaulted in the process to require things that are not actually required by commercial item prime contract terms and conditions...a form of sloppy system overkill.
  9. DFARS 252.227-7014 Rights in Noncommercial Computer Software, etc., paragraph (b)(3) is as follows: (i) The Government shall have restricted rights in noncommercial computer software required to be delivered or otherwise provided to the Government under this contract that were developed exclusively at private expense. (ii) The Contractor, its subcontractors, or suppliers are not required to provide the Government additional rights in noncommercial computer software delivered or otherwise provided to the Government with restricted rights. However, if the Government desires to obtain additional rights in such software, the Contractor agrees to promptly enter into negotiations with the Contracting Officer to determine whether there are acceptable terms for transferring such rights. All noncommercial computer software in which the Contractor has granted the Government additional rights shall be listed or described in a license agreement made part of the contract (see paragraph (b)(4) of this clause). The license shall enumerate the additional rights granted the Government.
  10. You may wish to consider obtaining a monthly or GFY quarterly estimate from the contractor for funds required to continue timely performance under the contract until completion. You may then fund per the estimated amount until further notice from the Contractor. The FAR clause you cited does not require any specific amount. Are there any Navy or DOD requirements that you fund a specific amount i.e., all amounts for a GFY? I would say the minimum time is a 120 days of funding. That would give the contractor time to notify the government when only 60 days of funding is estimated to be left, and give the government 30 days to com up with more funding past 120 days. However, that is a real short leash that would probably raise some red flags about the program's long term viability. Not clear to me how you are using the term "obligated." At times it appears you are meaning an internal amount and at times it looks like you might mean the amount funded on the contract.
  11. Ji, I am not completely on board with understanding what "closeout" is for this blog. In my experience, the closeout process includes disposition of government property, identifying any patents or royalty items/issues, etc. To that extent, a broad brush that the contractor is wholly uninvolved with the closeout process and there are no contract rights and obligations involved, seems a stretch. The contractor and the government are both involved with the laundry list of those items. On the other hand, if those standard laundry list of closeout items were already completed, and all contracted items were physically delivered and paid for per the contract amount/price, the contract could be considered complete in my view. It does sound like there are some internal government steps to take to de-obligate some funds and I also think of that as a unilateral government action. However, where all contracted items were not delivered and paid for, my experience, advice and practice in the subcontract world for a major prime contractor, was to negotiate a final closeout change notice with the subcontractor when there were outstanding contract issues such as presented in this blog i.e., "Government did not order and contractor agreed not to provide x." This made it bilaterally clear. Contract clauses were inserted to foreclose any claims.
  12. Note to NKD9, why don't you ask the contractor what it was contemplating with respect to the contract, if anything?
  13. Hi here_2_help. In my experience, that is usually the right thing to do in cases of a subcontract between affiliates. If not, for example, there could be some serious tax consequences. It would look like both affiliates are actually one company. In the case of two Divisions, they actually are one company, so "arms-length" would not be appropriate and can be counterproductive. For example, having the Division "proposal" audited for rates, obtaining a current cost or pricing data certificate, etc.
  14. I have never taken into account the details in the above posts when it came to a "Division." Divisions of a Company are not legal entities and can not be successfully sued or contract with one another in a legally enforceable manner. The parent company of the Divisions is the actual legal entity to be sued and contracted with. Divisions can not contract with one another because you can't contract with yourself (the parent company would in essence be contracting with itself). Hoping this helps you but I am not sure it does because I don't grasp the focus of the posts above as being relevant to your question about subcontracts between divisions.
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