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Vern Edwards

Not a good clerk

17 posts in this topic

It looks like the guy amended his FBO posting to state "Cancellation of Non-Requirement"

 

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Embarrassing? Maybe.  But you have to give it to him for his excuse, "Rather than spend hours trying to figure our how to delete it, I posted and moved on."

If anyone is curious, your system administrator for FBO can delete posts in their entirety.

 

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1 hour ago, Weatherman said:

"Rather than spend hours trying to figure our how to delete it, I posted and moved on."

If you're in a bind, ok round that corner, but the article says "didn’t want to spend time learning how to delete it"


IMO that's a piss poor excuse.

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I agree, it was a bit lazy. I do wish some procurement folks would have more pride in their work.

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Sad! #MakeContractingGreatAgain

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I have a good deal of sympathy with the 1102’s abandonment of his efforts to post a synopsis on FBO. This is particularly true if he abandoned his efforts on FBO in favor of reading, interpreting and applying the FAR correctly and of developing an acquisition strategy that enables his customer to meet its mission.

With the wholesale application of IT to procurement over the past 20 years, the procurement knowledge of 1102s has declined noticeably. They spend too much time attempting to comply with arbitrary and capricious IT dictates and too little time reading FAR and GAO decisions interpreting the FAR, doing market research, putting together concise and comprehensible solicitations, and conducting efficient and effective source selections.

When I was a young 1102, I didn’t fight with a typewriter or fax machine; a clerk did. Let’s restore an environment where the 1102 masters the FAR and the markets supporting his or her customers, not the incomprehensible software underlying FBO, SPS and FPDS!

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26 minutes ago, Gordon Shumway said:

Sad! #MakeContractingGreatAgain

PepeTheFrog is calling for a complete and total shutdown of posting on FBO until we can figure out what the heck is going on! We have no choice, folks. No choice!

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Well, let me add that FPDS is especially incomprehensible when you're trying to extract procurement data. We used to get nifty reports from GSA. Now we have to read the awful FPDS manual. IT has not made procurement data easier to find.

All salute the IT industry, founded by P.T. Barnum.

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"How bad is FPDS?"

"FPDS is so bad, there's a healthy market for extracting all data from FPDS, putting it into a usable database, and manipulating it with run-of-the-mill / useful software applications. In other words, FPDS is an utter failure and obstacle to the very data it's meant to store and make accessible. People pay money to not use FPDS."

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Ad Hoc report generation, and the subsequent export into Excel for analysis purposes, only works if the data has some integrity. When I was an 1102, I always took the time to accurately populate the contract action report, but such attention to detail seems to be the exception not the rule. How do other people do it? Blindfolded and typing with their toes? Sure seems like it...

#MCGA

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2 hours ago, Gordon Shumway said:

Sad! #MakeContractingGreatAgain

Bigly, Gordon.  Bigly.

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Quote

Ad Hoc report generation, and the subsequent export into Excel for analysis purposes, only works if the data has some integrity. When I was an 1102, I always took the time to accurately populate the contract action report, but such attention to detail seems to be the exception not the rule. How do other people do it? Blindfolded and typing with their toes? Sure seems like it...

These days, most 1102s can't spell FPDS as their automated procurement systems "populate" FPDS automatically. 

In fact, many, if not most, automatic procurement systems create solicitations and contract awards with minimal involvement by 1102s.

Gone are the days when 1102s assembled line items and specs, deliveries, inspections and acceptances and when they reviewed clause and provision prescriptions to assure compliance with FAR and with common sense (e.g. are Sections B, C, L and M consistent internally and with each other?). Gone are the days when they reviewed contract files as they entered data into FPDS.

Errors are attributed to the software, not to the 1102 and the COs.

Perhaps it's time to modify FAR 1.602 to reflect the new IT reality!

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4 hours ago, napolik said:

In fact, many, if not most, automatic procurement systems create solicitations and contract awards with minimal involvement by 1102s.

Rise of the machines, I think I saw this in a movie once. It didn't end well...

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Speaking of FPDS, the GAO likes it, sufficiently:

Quote

To identify trends in defense and civilian agencies’ contract spending, we analyzed obligation data from the archive files of the Federal Procurement Data System-Next Generation (FPDS-NG)—the government’s procurement database—for fiscal years 2011 through 2015.3 We assessed the reliability of FPDS-NG data by (1) performing electronic testing of selected data elements, and (2) reviewing existing information about the FPDS-NG system and the data it produces. We determined that the FPDS-NG data were sufficiently reliable for our purposes.

http://www.gao.gov/assets/690/683273.pdf

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It may be reliable, but it's not readily accessible without assistance from a program expert.

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Regarding FPDS-NG I would agree on the accessibility as it does takes time to understand how to retrieve data.    For general purposes I have found https://www.usaspending.gov/Pages/Default.aspx to be fairly handy for quick data retrieval.  I have searched it by Department, agency, specific contract number, etc. and usually get sufficiently reliable data, or at least it looks that way.  It also serves a purpose for all the interests I have from not only contracting but government assistance in general inclusive of information about farm programs, etc.

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