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  1. Today

    There are many ISO software systems you can find on line at competitive prices. With just a quick look I found this one that seems to offer free advice/templates, which may give you some ideas and help you determine the depth of your needs. https://www.iso9001help.co.uk/index.html

    Suggest you obtain this from your parent organization, Northrop Grumman.
  4. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Instead of requesting "narrative" written proposals, develop a questionnaire that asks specific questions about performance and instructs offerors to respond with specific and concise answers. Instead of requesting "narrative" written proposals, require and evaluate 2-hour oral presentations.
  5. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    See Marge Rumbaugh's 2015 article, "Why does source selection take so long?" http://read.nxtbook.com/ncma/contractmanagement/november2015/whydoessourceselection_feat.html
  6. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    1, Define the requirement clearly and concisely. Vague and voluminous statements of work don't help 2. only evaluate the minimum necessary to get what you need. More evaluation factors muddy the water. 3. Eliminate amendments and extensions. Without these available as a fallback the agency will have to focus on #1 and #2 above..
  7. Yesterday
  8. Well I wasn't but now I am........... I would like to see the entire contract or at least the publically issued solicitation please before I respond further. I know, pipe dream but all the same I have seen several threads like this that always do not provide all the facts. Is this a new requirement or a contract that has been in place for lets say several years? Not saying right or wrong yet but if for some reason what is occurring has been so then maybe, just maybe, there is a legit reason why it is so. And no ill will intended p5tMike but exactly what is your position in the acquisition hierarchy. CO, contract specialist, inspector, interested program person, new to the procurement, been seeing this for days, months, years, or contractor employee as I am not sure what you mean by "my COR"? Overall from my point of view it seems there is a lot missing to provide a reasoned response. I can guess like others and my guess might be good advice and might be the same as others but then there is......oh well I can only dream!
  9. Signing Contractor Employees' Timecards

    (Emphasis added.) I'm confused. How does the Government FTE "concur" on a timesheet? What is the mechanism? Is it a signature? If so, what does the signature signify, from a legal/contractual point of view? Further, are your personnel concurring on contractor timesheets or on contractor invoices? Or both?
  10. Go paperless. Get rid of paper contract files. Require digital signatures for all internal documents, and external documents when verifiable. Reduce the number of reviews and re-reviews for solicitations, acq-plans, contracts, etc. Hire less 1102’s and more low grade procurement techs and purchase agents to handle clerical tasks and simple buys. Hire or contract with procurement analysts to handle data calls. Or reduce the number of data calls.
  11. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Just thought of another one: For any program whose average PALT exceeds one year, a 1% incompetence tax is assessed to the program the following year (by withholding 1% of the program's budget). These funds are redsitributed to programs whose average PALT is less than one year in the preceding year. Funds are allocated based on the programs' average PALT (the lower the average PALT, the more $).
  12. Why are they concerned with fixed price? My guess is OIG or some other audit agency thinks we need to make deductions because they don't understand contracting. Our agency has hundreds of professional services contractors who are from many companies and scattered through the offices all on labor hour task orders or contracts. There is usually a COR for the contract but all the contractors are on task orders, one or two per order. The Government FTE who they support is responsible for tracking if they were on the job and makes sure the COR responsible for invoicing knows. The easiest way to accomplish this is to "concur" on timesheets. The time sheets all get submitted with the invoice so the COR knows how many hours were not worked. If invoices get paid without a Government FTE concurring with the timesheet, our OIG and internal financial auditors say we don't have a legitimate receiving document. We could create a receiving document, reenter the hours and waste more hours sending them forward but concurring on invoices works and is the easiest way for the COR approving the invoices to know if a contractor cut out an hour early or took the day off on leave. Might not be ideal but has worked for years.
  13. A dedicated team without 99 other things to do.
  14. Charge companies for frivolous protests Limit a companies ability to protest to only one venue. Either GAO or COFC, but they should not be allowed to do both. If you pick the right Source Selection team members (doers) keep the team small (easy to keep track of and focused), trained them (smart better than experience) keep your factors to a couple, there isn't any reason why you can't do a source selection in well under a year, no matter how big a dollar value your action.
  15. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Redskin Fan, No critiques yet. This is brainstorming. Hear, hear!
  16. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Read the rules (which I now just broke...sort of):
  17. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    I'd have to respectfully disagree with the stop preparing and issuing draft RFPs comment. If we are just talking about speeding up the process without changes in the regulations, I'd concentrate on how to get better proposals. I'd push that draft documents (or portions thereof) be more routinely posted well in advance of the RFP issuance. For instance, if you have a re-compete, we should more routinely be issuing historical information etc several months in advance so prospective offerors have the opportunity to absorb the information and make a better educated guess on whether nor not to pursue the opportunity. I find it easier to engage industry in a market research mode which may also lead to straightening out the Government requirements before the RFP is issued. I also find too many RFPs get issued with one vendor already having complete access to the Government's requirements and historical information and everyone else getting 30 days to prepare a proposal. I believe the more you put out for industry to see up front the more likely it is that you'll get quality proposals back. It's substantially quicker to review a quality proposal than a poor one. That's my opinion anyway. The other thing I'd consider is for more Program Offices to dedicate people to develop requirements and write SOWs. A well-crafted requirement tends to glide through the process while a poorly written one sputters along. Thanks
  18. Adopt FAR subpart 12.6 as the standard.
  19. 1. Be more prudent in using draft RFPs. 2. Have evaluation factors for what you actually need to select a contractor. 3. Develop competent evaluation teams. 4. Have the contracting officer as the source selection official (SSO). For example, there are agencies when the CO can only serve as the SSO for LPTA and Sealed Bid procurements.
  20. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    1. Rescind DoD Mandatory Source Selection procedures. 2. When evaluating offeror capability, limit information to what can be verified (i.e., factual information). No essay-writing contests that require an offeror to explain how they intend to accomplish each task in the SOW. No technical/management proposals. No creative writing. No opportunities for salesmanship. 3. Increase use of the advisory multi-step process. Make it mandatory if you expect more than five proposals. 4. Take bid protest authority away from the GAO. Offerors can protest to the agency or the COFC. Decisions from either can be appealed to the CAFC.
  21. Remove arbitrary and ambiguous distinctions between "clarifications" and "discussions" that inhibit contracting officers from appropriately and fairly communicating with offerors after receipt of proposals.
  22. How competitive are 1102 jobs?

    When I started in 1980 (in DC), a journeyman was a 12. Being a 13 was a really big deal. The journeyman level climbed to a 13 in the 90's. When I retired last year I'd say the journeyman level had moved to the 14 in DC. It took me 26 years to get to the 15. People are getting to the 14 now in DC in less than 10 years. In interviews for a 14, I'd ask people about their Part 15 experience. I had more than one blank stare. Rarely did anyone indicate they had done more than a handful of Part 15 procurements. It's a different world and I'd readily admit that a good 12 in 1980 could work circles around most people in the 1102 field today (probably including myself).
  23. By Tyler Freiberger To much international acclaim, earlier this year Iceland introduced a new equal pay act to fight discrimination against protected classes, particularly historically underpaid women. The introduction of the Act made the cover of Time magazine and garnered wide-spread attention on the 24-hour news networks’ cycles. While the historic Act may warrant such coverage, for domestic industry insiders the celebration of Iceland’s legislative prioritization of gender equality may ring a bit hollow, as the United States’ passed the Equal Pay Act over half a century ago. And, as Centre has discussed in the past, pay discrimination has been illegal ever since. Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) made a related show of force on the issue through its Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (“OFCCP”), issuing a thousand letters to government contractors advising that it may audit contractors for compliance with non-discrimination/affirmative action obligations, including matters of pay equity. Clearly, the global march towards gender equality moves forward, but before we rush toward an “Icelandic model,” there are complicated issues to address. First, there are clear conceptual differences between Iceland’s new model and the United States’ system. The “big move” of the Icelandic law is to demand that employers prove they are not paying women less than men; in contrast, the American system places that burden on the employee attempting to prove their case. Despite that variance in burden of proof, U.S. contractors reading these audit letters from DOL are likely not celebrating an easy road to compliance. In fact, with a recent groundbreaking study out of Stanford, it is clear employers can have a very thin rope to walk when attempting to eliminate a purported “pay gap.” American anti-discrimination laws are based upon the principle that, assuming an absence of discrimination all people will be equally represented and compensated in the workforce. Therefore, if a class of people are underrepresented/under-compensated in a workforce, something is wrong in the employer’s process. Yet, the law is clear that employers cannot make employment decisions based on gender, even if that decision is directly made to further affirmative action goals – i.e., “reverse” discrimination remains illegal even in an affirmative action context. Instead, the employer is meant to study its workforce, identify inequalities, and identify what gaps exist in its process that lead to inequality. Perhaps it is where the employer is recruiting, how it qualifies candidates, who it chooses to make hiring decisions, or what criteria the employer uses to advance current employees. The hundreds of government contractors recently receiving the OFCCP letters will be performing exactly these analyses. Imagine then, if a hard look at your workforce reflected men earning 7% more an hour than women for doing the exact same job; how do you react? It is expressly unlawful to purposely increase women’s pay 7% more an hour, so necessarily employers must identify what in their processes has caused the inequality. For context, this is the scenario Uber finds itself in after the aforementioned Stanford study. Upon examining over a million Uber rides in the Chicago area, researchers noted a substantial pay gap between male and female drivers, while “the average of rider ratings of drivers is statistically indistinguishable between genders.” In sum, women are making less money, while performing the same job, with equal customer satisfaction, and being paid through a computer algorithm where driving X distance at Y time results in a computer-generated rate. Discrimination, right? Well, maybe not. What makes the results so interesting is that under the Uber model, riders and drivers are assigned without gender preference; and, simultaneously riders are fined if they reject the driver pre-pickup. This essentially creates a double-blind system of assigning work. Preference for a male driver over a female driver – i.e. canceling a female driver’s pickup – awards the driver and punishes the rider. And, the study shows no (or at most very little) such driver selecting preference. Rather, the data revealed that the largest cause of the pay gap to be arising from the specific (and varying) times men and women decide to drive. Other than amending its scale to pay women more per ride than men, how might we (or Iceland) assert that Uber solve this problem? And is there even a “problem” to solve? If you are an American company sweating over a similar gap in your workforce, we can offer some relief. While American employers should always be exploring these questions, and considering solutions, the “unknown” currently goes in the employer’s favor. In the United States, employees still must present evidence isolating and identifying the discrete element in the hiring or compensation processes that allegedly produces the discriminatory outcome. See EEOC v. Freeman, 961 F. Supp. 2d 783 (D. Md. 2013), aff’d in part sub nom. E.E.O.C. v. Freeman, 778 F.3d 463 (4th Cir. 2015). Still, under either the U.S. or Iceland model, you do not want to be the last to know. About the Author: Tyler Freiberger Associate Attorney Tyler Freiberger is an associate attorney at Centre Law & Consulting primarily focusing on employment law and litigation. He has successfully litigated employment issues before the EEOC, MSPB, local counties human rights commissions, the United States D.C. District Court, Maryland District Court, and the Eastern District of Virginia. The post Count Your Blessings- A Thousand DOL Audit Letters Never Looked So Good appeared first on Centre Law & Consulting. View the full article
  24. Signing Contractor Employees' Timecards

    Out of curiosity, why is anyone concerned with contractor timesheets on an FFP contract?
  25. It's FFP type Retreadfed, and correct, the language doesn't specifically state the issue; and Vern - you are correct I was quoting some standard verbiage from delegation formats. Thanks all for the information. I think I have enough to rely on now regarding the matter. Again, thank you all. Mike
  26. How can we speed up the source selection process?

    Stop preparing and issuing draft RFPs.
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