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Everything posted by Supes

  1. We really never request any financial capability information from offerors in any of our solicitations which I'm sure is part of the issue, we don't request it and don't evaluate for it.
  2. Thanks! Only request the minimum you need to evaluate them right? We do some commercial items but much of what we do is IT or professional services related commercial services, sometimes to the tune of a few hundred million over 5 years so. For the big stuff like a $200M professional services requirement, assuming we didn't use DCAA or DCMA or the like, in general what level of analysis do you think would be appropriate (balance sheets/income statements, promises from banks or partners, their own analysis of how they've got the resources)? I know for publicly traded companies you can find a lot of this information without having to request it but for a private company, especially a small business, I wouldn't want to overburden them with requesting a ton of information.
  3. An intern of ours, with a finance major, was reviewing the FAR and asked me how exactly we determine contractors to "Have adequate financial resources to perform the contract, or the ability to obtain them" in accordance with FAR Part 9. Seems like he really wants to apply his skillset there. Dawns on me that we don't really do anything to make that determination, most of what we do is commercial and we just assume vendors are able to perform. We've got some blanket language in our decision docs that the vendor is responsible IAW the standards set forth in FAR Part 9.104, check their entity registration and FAPIIS report, but that's about it. We don't actually request, or look up, any information regarding their financials/commitments/operational controls/etc regardless of dollar value. Now re-reading the section, it seems our office isn't doing our due diligence here. What do your offices do to actually determine contractors responsible under all these standards?
  4. Well right now it's written more 10/1/22-9/30/23 then we could exercise the 10/1/23-9/30/24 option as late as 11/30/23. I saw Don's comment though and that makes more sense but couldn't that potentially put us past 5 years?
  5. We have a requirement for Custodial Services that we're recompeting. This requirement is on the fiscal year cycle. We've had some issues at end of year on the current contract with obtaining funding previously. We've also had some issues with getting the modifications out on time even if we've had funding. To remedy this we're looking to innovate! We noticed that FAR 17.204(d) seems to imply that we could tailor FAR 52.217-9 to be exercised after the current period of performance ends. Could we tailor it to allow the existing POP to end and then we could exercise it up to say 60 days after that POP ends? Would we then be required to reduce the value of that new option exercise by 60 days or could we just push out the end of the newly exercised POP?
  6. Maybe less relevant than you're looking for but I once asked a GSA Schedules CO how they evaluated 52.222-26, their office only checked that it was included with the schedule proposal. Personally, I'd say just evaluate it at the IDIQ level. If there's specific concerns at the task order level related to it for some reason, ask for more details as a technical factor.
  7. Typically any ambiguity in a contract would go against the drafter. Seems highly risky for our industry partners, I wonder if they would be willing to do all the extra work and take on that additional risk. Definitely a big trade off (pardon the pun) for them. I'd also be concerned about the ability of Government Contracting Officers and Lawyers to review these agreements to ensure the Government is getting a fair deal. Like Constricting Officer said, I like the idea and the burden it takes off the Federal workforce but it seems like it'll take a lot of additional training. I can see our lawyers being on board more with this than policy or higher level reviewers though.
  8. It feels like a mix to me but at this point in their careers they need to know how to look up answers. Some of the less experienced (but still 5+ years, GS13s) aren't confident in their decision making skills though a few of them research and come with well thought out problems but not answers. I think the bigger issue are the ones who have been there forever, they're used to having supervisors look everything up for them and make their decisions. I think the worst part of that the less experienced COs don't feel they can or even should reach out to the more experienced ones before coming to leadership because they see the senior COs don't make their own decisions.
  9. Our leadership team in acquisitions has an issue with our COs, they come to us for every little thing. While we're happy to teach and provide training, it seems that the default when anything arises is to ask their supervisors. I'm talking from simple things like "what's the micropurchase threshold" and "what provisions and clauses should I include" to more complex concepts like "how should we structure this evaluation criteria?" In other offices I've been in, 90% of the questions we answer would have never been brought to the supervisor (lest they think you don't know what you're doing). These are COs with anywhere from 5-15 years of experience under their belt, warranted between $5M and $15M. We provide internal training, opportunities for external trainings, bring in SMEs to talk with the staff, provide materials for them to read and resources for them to use but we're at a loss. Does anyone have any advice, reading, techniques, anything to help us try to get our COs to think for themselves?
  10. Thankfully only one person suggested that and they were immediately shot down. The idea would be that they recreate a document with today's date and preface it with "This document has been recreated to complete the contract file, the original document is not available or did not exist at the time of action." If they can't recreate it, like a D&F and the person performing the action has left the office, then an memo to the file would be created stating that the file is not available. Personally, I'm not really seeing the benefit of recreating documents or even memo'ing if it's not directly related to closing out the action (is the work completed and did the contractor get paid the right amount?).
  11. I've got a situation where our contract files (I'm talking from pre-award through award and some admin) aren't great. In fact some are really bad with lots of documentation missing. Like pretty much all offices, we're getting a big push to closeout our backlog of contracts that are physically complete. Some of our management feels that the files need to be 100% complete in order to close them out, others feel that we just need a final invoice/certification that the performance is complete/records that show (for cost type) a final audit was completed and any price revisions reconciled (largely they're looking at FAR 4.804-5(a)). Those that want the files 100% want the staff to go back and complete the files (go get historical SAMs, recreate D&Fs/files and memo why it's late). What are your offices doing for closeouts when all the files aren't complete? I'm sure this must be a very common issue...
  12. I'm talking about the IDIQ itself. Thanks for your and Verns response. Is there any logic to only using FAR 12 and 16.504? Some strange contracting this organization does...
  13. I have an upcoming requirement for an single source SA-IDIQ that's for commercial services below the $1M. Our legal office, in reviewing our AP, has been citing all sorts of FAR Part 6 requirements we'd need to meet to do this as a sole source and making the whole process more difficult even after I referenced that I was intending to solicit this IDIQ under FAR 13 to a single source. Their response to my FAR 13 argument was that it doesn't apply to awarding IDIQs which doesn't make much sense to me (I've used FAR 15 to award an IDIQ, why not FAR 13?). Now they've got me questioning my previous experience/knowledge in whether or not FAR 13/14/15 apply when procuring an IDIQ under FAR 16.504. I looked at previous solicitations from this office and they all only mentioned FAR 12 and 16.504 for IDIQs, no mention of FAR 13 or 15 at all. Am I losing it and we don't need to apply FAR 13/14/15 procedures to IDIQs or do we still need to utilize FAR 13/14/15 as applicable?
  14. I'd also recommend looking at the Harris IT GAO case about IDIQs within IDIQs: https://www.gao.gov/mobile/products/b-411699%2Cb-411796
  15. Sorry for taking forever to get back to everyone, my schedule has been packed lately! This is a simple requirement for custodial services which has been in the 8a program for a few years. The CO is new to the effort and the previous contracts have all used FAR 15 and have had some pretty lengthy and detailed documents. It sounds like you're all saying that we can limit the documentation to just the minimum to explain the rationale behind the award.
  16. As far as I can see (using my phone) there isn't any that really speaks to the documentation requirements for the action other than what form to use really. It does say prepare it iaw agency procedures but what about things like evaluation that the price is fair and reasonable? I like any idea to simplify stuff so I'm curious to see what sort of documentation you'd need included.
  17. Looking to issue an 8a award and my CO is all wrapped around the axel on whether she should use FAR 13 or 15 for the award. I told her it really doesn't matter but thinking back on it, does it matter? Would it be easier to negotiate within the bounds set by FAR 15 or less documentation needed for FAR 13?
  18. Not to focus on only a part of a great response but how did this go over with the rest of leadership? (Unless you were the top dog) My previous position didn't have formal contract reviews and it was fantastic, there was tons of room for innovation, collaboration, and accountability for decisions rather than COs simply trying to get things though the review process. Definitely something I would look to implement depending on how the team functions when I get officially on board.
  19. I'm seeing a lot of the qualities reflected from your comments in my favorite supervisors I've had which I would seek to emulate (but not copy!). Be a real person and realize real people work for you, give them room and support to succeed, continue to improve my own skills, and limit TPS reports and indoor parkour to a bare minimum. Is there anything in particular about this career field or federal service that you all feel is especially different for supervisors? Early in my career I felt like supervisors might have had warrants but rarely used them if ever (as if they were just for show), as I've progressed I've noticed that many of them just never had the time to really take on a requirement to the point that they could be effective. I'll be interested to see if that's going to be the case for me.
  20. Long time lurker here that just got his first supervisory job. I'm both excited and a little apprehensive for the new position, it's largely managing a team of 1102s doing small buys for a civilian agency. I've been a CO for a couple of years but haven't had any real supervisory experience. I'm hoping you all could provide any tips or advice for a new supervisor. I'll be happy with anything (advice, thoughts, reading, etc.) that anyone can provide!
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