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LM_ABITWT

Rules regarding bidding personnel on multiple contracts

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I'm looking for some guidance regarding a contractor's ability to bid contractor personnel in a new business proposal and cite them as Key Personnel if they are already performing (full-time) on an existing contract that has plenty of PoP remaining.  If possible, we did not intend on replacing the contractor personnel on the existing contract, but rather scale back their hours and have them split their time between the two contracts.  These are Exempt personnel so they would not be getting paid for hours worked in excess of 40/week.  I had concerns with how the Gov't would view this pricing approach (especially since it's the same customer on both contracts so they'll recognize the names as personnel already supporting our other contract).  Could this pose a threat from a protest perspective, if we are the successful offeror?  Any prior experience with this type of situation would be helpful.

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LM_ABITWT,

You are the contractor, right? You are proposing the personnel. Do you have a coherent and logical story to tell the customer if asked? What's your plan? If you have a good story, then I would make it a part of your technical approach -- be proactive.

Hope this helps

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LM_ABITWT,

What types(s) of contract are we talking about?  Are both the existing and future contracts fixed price? Cost-reimbursement? One of each?  If your existing contract is fixed price, and you have people working on it full time, then is't the government program office going to think they've already paid for those people's hours?

Did you win the existing work competitively, or was it negotiated on a non-competitive basis?

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2 hours ago, LM_ABITWT said:

I'm looking for some guidance regarding a contractor's ability to bid contractor personnel in a new business proposal and cite them as Key Personnel if they are already performing (full-time) on an existing contract that has plenty of PoP remaining.  If possible, we did not intend on replacing the contractor personnel on the existing contract, but rather scale back their hours and have them split their time between the two contracts.  These are Exempt personnel so they would not be getting paid for hours worked in excess of 40/week.  I had concerns with how the Gov't would view this pricing approach (especially since it's the same customer on both contracts so they'll recognize the names as personnel already supporting our other contract).  Could this pose a threat from a protest perspective, if we are the successful offeror?  Any prior experience with this type of situation would be helpful.

Is there a key personnel clause in the current contract that requires these personnel to dedicate a % of their time on the contract?

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Yes, I'm asking from a prime contractor perspective.  Both contracts are CPFF Term.  The existing contract was awarded on a competitive basis.  

Navy, you touched on what I see as the crux of the issue.  Currently, all of the personnel we're thinking about bidding on the other contract are already supporting their contract on a full-time basis.  We are in the process of developing that coherent/logical story of how it would work if we're awarded the second contract.  Should that be our primary concern (i.e. convincing the customer/technical evaluators our approach can work)?  This approach would not be grounds for an unsuccessful offeror to lodge a protest against the USG's decision to award to us?

Also, there is not a key personnel clause in the existing (nor the potential) contract that requires the personnel to dedicate a certain % of their time to the contract.

Thanks again for everyone's input!

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This raises the question of whether your existing contract actually needs these personnel to be working full-time.  If not, why are they charging full time?  If so, how can they be spared for another effort?  If you have good answers to these issues, then I agree with here_2_help that you should make it an explicit part of your proposal.  I can think of no good reason for an unsuccessful offeror to protest such a practice.  What would be the basis of a protest?

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19 hours ago, LM_ABITWT said:

I had concerns with how the Gov't would view this pricing approach (especially since it's the same customer on both contracts so they'll recognize the names as personnel already supporting our other contract).

When you say "I had concerns..." I presume that you mean that you're worried about whether the agency would find your approach to be acceptable.

Your concerns may be warranted. Some agency personnel would likely think that your approach: "bid contractor personnel in a new business proposal and cite them as Key Personnel [even though] they are already performing (full-time) on an existing contract that has plenty of PoP remaining," makes you either an idiot or a prospective cheat, depending on how you present it in your proposal. The immediate reaction might be: Bull! Those people already have full time jobs! 

19 hours ago, LM_ABITWT said:

Could this pose a threat from a protest perspective, if we are the successful offeror?  

Maybe. It depends on what you say in the proposal. A protester might complain that it is an attempt at bait and switch.

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LM:  Without the details I am just going to give you my knee jerk reaction to your initial post. I would be vary wary from a technical acceptability standpoint.  If these positions are listed as "key positions" I would imagine the government's intent is that they focus on this project.  That would be difficult if not impossible to do if they are already full-time on another project.  Now if it were a program manager that may be a different story since they may be able to manage both projects, but you'd need to do some extensive elaboration in your proposal to convince me of that.  Then, as Navy pointed out, questions could easily come up that perhaps they shouldn't be charging time to the first project if it doesn't require 100% of their attention.  I think you may open yourself up to issues you don't want to deal with if you propose in this manner for the second project.

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LM,  if your intention is to share the same personnel on the existing contract and the new contract, you should very clearly describe your intention and proposed method. Describe how you will successfully perform the new contract without lowering the quality of the on-going (CPFF) contract and that you will reduce the charges on the first contract as the personnel are used part-time on the new contract. 

The approach may or may not be acceptable to the client. 

It could backfire if the client decides that you don't need the full time use of the staff on the existing contract (and directs reductions) and then you don't win the new award. 

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