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At issue within my office are the conflicting definitions of "data" found at DoD 5010.12-M and FAR 27.401 as they pertain to the CDRLS requirement. If DoD 5010.12-M is not authoritative, then we would look to other sources, such as FAR 27.401, for the definition.

A DoD Manual "implements policy established in a DoDD or DoDI." (DoDI 5025.01, pg. 17.) 

DoD 5010.12-M was "issued under the authority of DoD Instruction 5000.2, 'Defense Acquisition Management Policies and Procedures.'"

The referenced DoDI 5000.2 no longer exists. The modern DoDI 5000.02T "Operation of the Defense Acquisition System" does not appear to be directly relevant.

The DFARS references various manuals, but not DoD 5010.12-M.

Defense Pricing and Contracting ain't answering the phone.

My thinking is that DoD 5010.12-M lacks clear authority to mandate procedures pertaining to CDRLs, and is otherwise severely outdated to the point of obsolescence (e.g., try following some of the references). I would therefore advocate for a modern understanding of the term "data," which according to FAR 27.401 "does not include information incidental to contract administration."

I would be interested in reading the opinions of others on this topic as it pertains to CDRLs.

 

Edited by FrankJon
Added links to DoD issuances.
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5 minutes ago, C Culham said:

Carl...respectfully....you're killing me.  That doesn't get me any closer to an authoritative definition of "data" as it pertains to CDRLs.

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51 minutes ago, Don Mansfield said:

@FrankJon

FYI, FAR subpart 27.4 doesn't apply to DoD. See FAR 27.400 and DFARS 227.400. And DoD 5010.12-M is still active. See https://www.esd.whs.mil/Directives/issuances/dodm/.

Hi Don, I'm not questioning whether it's active. I'm questioning whether it's necessary and reasonable to treat it as mandatory policy without an underlying DoDD or DoDI at its foundation.

DAU also appears to reject the expansive DoD 5010.12-M definition of data. See: https://www.dau.edu/tools/Lists/DAUTools/Attachments/654/High-Level CDRL Plannng_26 June 2020.pdf pgs. 19-20.

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55 minutes ago, Don Mansfield said:

@FrankJon

FYI, FAR subpart 27.4 doesn't apply to DoD. See FAR 27.400 and DFARS 227.400. And DoD 5010.12-M is still active. See https://www.esd.whs.mil/Directives/issuances/dodm/.

And thank you for the reminder about the applicability of FAR subpart 27.4 in DoD. I should have reviewed the DFARS on this prior to posting. Despite this, there are various sources (none primary that I recall) that describe the CDRLs meaning of data as it is defined at FAR subpart 27.4 or similarly.

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53 minutes ago, FrankJon said:

Carl...respectfully....you're killing me.  That doesn't get me any closer to an authoritative definition of "data" as it pertains to CDRLs.

So you are telling me you have access to Assist and that you have reviewed the Data item Descriptions and it does not help clarify "data" for CDRLs?  Respectfully sorry I thought it would help. 

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1 hour ago, Don Mansfield said:

@FrankJon Where exactly is the "word" data being used? What are you trying to interpret?

As the word is used in DFARS 215.470. Most sources I have seen indicate this is a reference to technical data as described at the DAU link (see also the Government Contracts Reference Guidebook definitions of CDRL and technical data). On the other hand, DoD 5010.12-M states:

Quote

Technical Data. As used in this Manual, the term technical data has the same meaning as the term data. (When used in reference to rights in data and computer software, the term technical data means recorded information of a technical or scientific nature. The term does not include computer software or data incidental to contract administration such as financial or management information.)

And:

Quote

Data. Data means recorded information regardless of the form or method of recording. For the purposes of this Manual, the term includes technical data, computer software documentation, financial information, management information and any other information required by a contract to be delivered to the Government.

So there seems to be a clear conflict between how the DoDM defines "data" and how other, more modern, sources define it.

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@FrankJon I don't see a conflict. "Technical data" is a subset of "data" according to the definitions you posted. That's how it's depicted on p. 19 of the DAU document.

What problem is this causing you? Do you want the contractor submit information, but not sure whether it should be listed on a CDRL?

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1 hour ago, Don Mansfield said:

I don't see a conflict. "Technical data" is a subset of "data" according to the definitions you posted. That's how it's depicted on p. 19 of the DAU document.

Don - I apologize if I haven't been descriptive enough, but the contrast is significant. I'll try to be more specific in this post.

(1) As we know, DFARS 215.470 requires a CDRL when the Government requests data. "Data" is not defined in the DFARS as far as I'm aware.

(2) DoD 5010.12-M purports to provide comprehensive instructions for the acquisition and management of data, including the preparation of CDRLs. It defines "data" expansively (see above), to include technical data and data incidental to the contract, like financial and management data. Likewise, it defines "technical data" as having "the same meaning" as "data." As I mentioned at the top, I think this DoDM is a flawed document of questionable authority, primarily because it lacks a DoDD or DoDI to supplement. Without those, I don't see how it stands as anything more than a guide.

(3) Alternately, in its "How to Complete a CDRL" guidance, DAU states:

Quote

For the purposes of DoD acquisition programs and the acquisition and management of data, technical data is the scope of interest. The term technical data is defined as: Recorded information (regardless of the form or method of the recording) of a scientific or technical nature (including computer software documentation) relating to supplies procured by an agency. Such term does not include computer software or financial, administrative, cost or pricing, or management data or other information incidental to contract administration.

Likewise, the Government Contracts Reference Guidebook (4th Ed.) defines a CDRL as:

Quote

A list of all technical data to be delivered on a contract with DOD, prepared using DD Form 1423. The purpose of this list is to identify, in a single document, all technical data ordered under a contract in order to permit the management of such data.

and technical data as:

Quote

Recorded information of a scientific or technical nature (including computer databases and computer software documentation). This term does not include computer software or financial, administrative, cost or pricing, or management data or other information incidental to contract administration.

(4) Thus, the DoDM would require CDRLs for all "recorded information regardless of the form or method of recording," whereas the latter sources would only require CDRLs for technical data, and exclude data incidental to contract administration.

 

1 hour ago, Don Mansfield said:

What problem is this causing you?

I don't believe it's appropriate to require CDRLs for all "recorded" deliverables. I believe CDRLs are only required for technical data, as defined in the GCRG and at FAR subpart 27.4. But...I lack an authoritative basis for this belief and the DoDM is admittedly a complicating factor. 

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33 minutes ago, FrankJon said:

I believe CDRLs are only required for technical data, as defined in the GCRG and at FAR subpart 27.4.

No, that's incorrect. There are hundreds of DIDs that describe data that are not technical data. For example, there are 12 active DIDs for administrative data, 31 for financial data, 271 for management, etc.

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FrankJon,

You’re letting the process drive your actions.  Start over.  Define what deliverables are needed for your acquisition.  Then separate those involving data.  Search assist and find matching DIDs.  Then spell those out in the 1423.  It’s your acquisition and you define what’s needed.  Don’t let the process force you to start based on how you’re going to comply.

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