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FAR Fetched

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  1. Here_2_Help Good point and it's exactly what the owners wanted to avoid (nice guys who are just nice guys). They had plenty of people they liked, just wanted someone else's opinion on their working knowledge. In a mid-size company, the wrong hire can either triple their need for outside counsel or cost them everything. - FF
  2. Vern, As stated in the first sentence, this is a position in a mid-size company (private sector obviously). I can see the opinion that asking about the Christian Doctrine was "petty" but hear me out. I believe it's important for anyone leading a contracts department to know FAR clauses can be part of your contract even if they're not actually in your contract. This has come up multiple times throughout my career. This was also a good way to discuss their understanding of what/when does the FAR apply a private company's contract. You would be surprised, well... you wouldn't be surprised...but there are many people in the private sector that believe the entire FAR applies to them. Question 3, in the private sector this makes perfect sense IMO - I did not read these off a sheet a paper but again, as stated in the OP, covered the conversationally. This seems very straightforward to me, I think most people who have been managing contracts for over 10+ years (in the Private Sector) has had at least one rub with a Program Manager and a COTR. I think "requisitioners" would actually be more confusing for someone in the private sector than saying the "COTR" or "Government Customer". Fair point regarding question 4. To you last point, again as I stated in the OP I "There were several other questions related to customer specific/industry experience..." which were much more theoretical. All of these interviews were an hour to an hour and a half - these were just a few points that stood out to me. - FF
  3. A friend of mine is looking for someone to head their contracts department; mid-size company that does most of its work in the Federal space. He didn’t have anyone in-house with extensive senior level contracting experience so he asked me to perform one part of the interview screening just to discuss contracts and make a recommendation. This position would have 1 or 2 direct reports of entry to mid-level contracts persons to support and mentor. This position would report directly to the C-level of the company and provide guidance on contractual issues/risks and manage its day to day contractual needs. The minimum requirement, among the obvious educational requirements, was 10 years’ experience managing contracts. I interviewed 9 people; all exceeded the minimum requirements including two that had a JD. Their HR department asked that I develop a list of topics/questions to cover for the sake of consistency. The topics/questions were, not asked in any order but I made sure I covered them during our conversations: The US government has three branches of government; the FAR applies to which one these three? Feel free to discuss any exceptions - No one could answer this question. Are you familiar with the Christian doctoring and how it relates to government contracting? – two people answered this with understanding. Tell me about an instance where an issue/disagreement was identified by Operations/Program office and was sent to Contracts to resolve? And specifically, how you resolved it? – (I thought this question was a gift). Only three could give a situation where they resolved something (e.g. COTR and PM disagreeing) This was particularly amazing to me, how anyone could go 10+ years supporting corporate contracts and NEVER disagreed with a COTR, CO or program office on the government side. What statutes which govern federal procurement are you familiar with? Of those, what risks would you advise during a proposal and/or operations phase? – No one could answer this until I started throwing softballs, “like the Davis-Bacon Act?” Tell me some of the different risks associated with a T&M, FFP and Cost Plus type contracts. – I got a lot of ‘choppy’ answers, most kept telling me that “Cost Plus has NO risk”…(me: “Really? None?”). Are you familiar with the Code of Federal Regulations and how it is the associated with the FAR? - only two people knew that the FAR was part of the CFR, one actually knew it was Title 48, chapter 1. One person actually told me the CFR is just another name for the FAR. There were several other questions related to customer specific/industry experience and working knowledge but these 6 above shocked me the most. My question to the Wifcon: Where these questions too hard for someone working at this level?
  4. You need to find out what your Prime's contract considers local travel. Typically anything within 25 miles of a duty station or performance location is not reimbursable. Again, that's 'typical' - I don't know your prime's contract or yours so it's really hard to say.
  5. I've seen more COTR's get charged than COs. Back when I when I still worked as Government employee, I watched one COTR get walked off base in handcuffs right in front of me. He later was charged and convicted of steering millions of dollars in contracts and taking bribes.
  6. wvanpup: Your post doesn't make sense to me. By statute, a GAO bid protest may be filed by any “interested party,” 31 U.S.C. §3553(a) or any “actual or prospective bidder or offeror whose direct economic interest would be affected by the award of the contract or by failure to award the contract.” 31 U.S.C. §3551(2)(A) Moreover, because of the focus on direct economic interest, GAO often requires that contractors both (1) have bid or offered and (2) be next in line for the award if the protest is sustained for them to be recognized as interested parties. Because they lack these direct economic interests, non-contractors—such as concerned citizens and potential subcontractors on federal contracts—are not interested parties who can bring GAO bid protests. What Awayforwrd describes the old Prime Contractor is protesting the work being moved out of their Set Aside Business concern to Full/Open. Coincidentally, they're a subcontractor to the new or potential Prime Contractor. I don't think it's wrong or poor form for a contractor, especially a small business concern to try to keep their work.
  7. I recently used some of the points Daniel Gordon has in his article to talk my CEO out of protesting an award. Great Article.
  8. I read the article under the Analysis section of Wifcon and was shocked at some of the statements: "Source selections always carry the risk of litigation. The bad news is there is no way to eliminate the possibility of a protest because the cost is minimal—some describe it as the price of a postage stamp." "Losing offerors are prime protest candidates. They have nothing to lose and everything to gain." Protests are very time consuming for a corporation and the use of outside counsel can costs tens of thousands of dollars. And it's a great way to piss off a customer - sure, they shouldn't hold that against a company for future work but people are people so it's always considered. Protests pull corporate resources from other work and other opportunities. When deciding to protest or not, it's always a tough decision and I've never referred it as "the price of stamp". I know we have several members here on the Government and Private side. What are your thoughts and/or experience? Do you think companies protest just to "take a shot" or do you think it's a real tough business decision to risk time/money/business relationships? Link to the article (it's only 2 pages): NEW Dangers of Source Selections: Debriefings By Christoph Mlinarchik, JD , Office of the Secretary of Defense, Washington Headquarters Services Mr. Mlinarchik's biography Source selections always carry the risk of litigation. The bad news is there is no way to eliminate the possibility of a protest because the cost is minimal—some describe it as the price of a postage stamp. The good news is there are ways to conduct source selections to minimize the likelihood of a protest. Take advantage of the following acquisition strategies to avoid litigation and save time and money. Losing offerors are prime protest candidates. They have nothing to lose and everything to gain. The post-award debriefing of offerors is the Government’s opportunity to extinguish any flickers of doubt about the fairness of the source selection, so get it right and keep it tight. The debriefing session should not display any signs of inconsistency or ambiguity. Diligent debriefings deter protests by demonstrating the fairness and impartiality of the source selection process and award decision . Please Read: Dangers of Source Selections: Debriefings
  9. I figured the "two months" issue was due to end of fiscal year. If it's all the time, not sure what to tell you.
  10. It's Fixed Price, you don't know the cost. I don't see a problem with a no-cost mod to change the SOW especially when both parties agree it's in each other's best interest. I'm not giving legal advice though, this is my opinion based on experience. As a contractor, I've absorbed costs for changes which came up right before or during a project all the time. It's usually the labor and/or travel which could be effected by waiting. It's not worth paying employees to sit around (or paying per diem, hotels if it's a project we traveled to) while I'm waiting on change order unless it's a substantial sum of money.
  11. This topic always gets you guys fired up
  12. You should also talk to you legal dept to see if the vendor is considered a "business associate" as defined in 45 C.F.R § 160.103 (also see the Electronic Protection Health Information EPHI also found there). Again, not sure what their doing so I can't really help you. And I strongly suggest that you not find a template and try to make a square peg fit into a round hole. I'm sure you're familiar with HIPAA-AS
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