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I know that the spirit of the contract agreement between Prime and sub, that the PM of the Prime communicate directly and only with the PM of the subcontract. I remember a FAR that also states what the communication is for Prime and sub, but I can't remember specifically. The Prime PM thinks that he can circumvent the  sub PM and speak/task the other sub contractors, because it is not specifically written in the TA or Contract agreement. How can the subcontractor PM enforce communications on the Prime PM?

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This is a great example of the conundrum of subcontracting. On one hand, the prime contractor is responsible for the execution of the contract, without regard to where in the supply chain that execution takes place. In theory, the prime and its supply chain are one team, aligned and working collaboratively. Thus, the prime's PM not only can, but should, be communicating with anybody in the supply chain whose performance is on the critical path.

Yet on the other hand, contractually the first tier subK is responsible for the performance of its next tier subcontractors. Thus, if the prime's PM gives direction to the lower-tier suppliers, bypassing the first tier subK PM, then a situation may be created where the first tier subK is contractually relieved of certain performance obligations.

There is no right answer to this situation.

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