Jump to content
The Wifcon Forums and Blogs


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

0 Neutral

About General.Zhukov

  • Rank

Profile Information

  • Location
  • Interests
    Deception & surprise, combined arms maneuver to encircle and destroy the enemy, T-34-85 Soviet Medium Tanks.

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. This is a thing that probably every B-School or general management book covers, something like 'empower your team' or 'how to delegate to your direct reports' Google re:Work has a bunch of stuff on this. https://rework.withgoogle.com/ Get *honest* feedback from the CO's themselves as to why they are acting like that, and listen to it. Explicitly define the responsibilities. Don't micromanage. In your case, perhaps that means refusing to answer the question. Forgive mistakes. "I told you to make your own eval criteria, and you did, and your sol flunked review. Tha
  2. https://hallways.cap.gsa.gov/app/#/doclib Many examples. Maybe hundreds.
  3. Part of a pitch I'm putting together for management. Essentially, I am arguing that we need some technology solutions to simplify some work processes that are frequent, time-consuming, and 'brainless' (ie, can be straight-forwardly handed-off to software). As an example of this type of process , I drilled down into exactly what should be done to correctly use the extremely common FAR Clause 52.212-5, within my department, HHS. It appears to be worse than I thought when I started out. HHS has three separate deviations for clause 52.212-5. In addition, the -5 clause refers to multiple
  4. Yes, as the experts above have stated. Its permissible under the HHSAR KP clause (I am also in HHS). This is fairly common for projects where the contractor, especially small businesses, need technical expertise. Say you are doing run-of-the-mill software dev, but need to connect your software to some weird archaic government IT system (this is very common, btw). This is a small but crucial part of the project. You might want to hire, as a consultant, an expert in that weird system. You expect you'll only need a few hours of their time (hence consultant, not employee or sub-contract
  5. In my agency, less than 5% of all contract actions are competitive using trade-offs. Less than 1% are competitive using FAR 15 procedures. There may be GS-13 FAC-C III 1102s in my agency who have never done a FAR 15 action. I'm speculating here, but it wouldn't surprise me if it were true. OK, some tactical advice. The main issue, as I understand it, is that the Program side doesn't want to spend a lot of time and effort on the low-value task of reviewing lots of proposals when the contract will most likely go to the LPTA offeror anyways. This is a common issue, and there ar
  6. I have had to do something like what you are describing. Basically, for system reasons, I couldn't add funding to a CLIN that needed more funds. Do not recommend except as last resort. We created a new CLIN just for funding. Its description was something like 'CLIN 2 replaces CLIN 1 as of date. No change except for funding.' It was actually quite complicated to do this, since we had to transfer over the incomplete work to the new CLIN, close out the funding for the old CLIN, update a bunch of stuff since CLIN 2 didn't exist nor was anticipated at time of award, etc. We tried to clear
  7. Hmm, yes, you are right, I change my mind. Do it commercial, so long as I can make the contract reflect the inherently very-high-risk nature of that type of work. For example, ensuring (contractual) hellfire will reign down upon the contractor in the event of a data breach. Honestly, I don't know why federal contracting has such a bright line between commercial vs. non-commercial (although I am 100% sure somebody reading this does know why).
  8. In all seriousness, there are thriving markets for any and all types of cyber attacks and information collection - tools, methods, data, techniques, Cyberwar-As-A-Service, you name it. That joke about spying on Mexican narcos? That's a commercial service. Hacking into encrypted iPhones? Cellebrite (private company) can do it, but not the NSA. Its all commercial. My guess is anything 'investigation' related or otherwise that involves gathering and/or analyzing digital information is commercial. I also think we (GVT) should not treat these services as commercial, even if they are.
  9. I've both received and (self-servingly) presented this argument, which is false. Its not the classification (labor category) of the workers that matter, its the thing being worked on. Counter-factual 1: Let's say the service is off-the-chart obviously non-commercial. Updating the on-board guidance system for the AMRAAM medium-range air-to-air missile in response to recently discovered PLA ECM tomfoolery. We agree this is non-commercial, right? Well, it so happens that the AMRAAM guidance system is written in the software language ADA. So you hire someone to write the code.
  10. Yes, we covered it in grad school (Public Administration). As I recall, all the case studies were from UK (apparently its much more widely applied over there), EU or transportation in US. Seems to be a reasonable option when there's a large up-front capital expenditure that the government is unable or unwilling to finance, plus a predictable future revenue stream, and low interest rates. They do tend to be very expensive - hefty premium when the contractor is responsible from cradle to grave, and break-even is like 20 years in the future - but sometimes its worth it. P3's have other i
  11. 1. There are guides about how to contract for software and address your specific issue. Not gonna link now, but they are out there. DoD has a few. Recommend using them. 2. Yes, this is the norm. Software doesn't show up in the loading bay on shrink-wrapped pallet, ready for go. Software these days almost always has supporting services integral to its operation. As they say, 'software is never done.' 3. Practically speaking, here is some advice based on when I got a SBA protest related to classifying something software-like as a product or service. If the total estimated value
  12. lol. Did you work at my agency? Anyways, agreed PALT has its uses and limits. At some future time when I've gotten a handle on the basics, our data may incorporate quality metrics, such as they are, things like audit findings, review & approval. Thank you @Vern Edwards for that paper. I love that stuff. For the detailed data that seems to not be available online, I'm going to reach out to our sister agencies within our Department. Thank you all, its been very helpful, I don't think I will be updating this discussion again.
  13. We have two PALTs. The Target PALTs are negotiated between two major parties - Contracting Office and the Program Office. This is one that Simplifieds are missing. The Actual PALTs how much time it actually takes. Actual PALT > Target PALT => Bad. % Target PALTs missed are a KPI. What's useful about data analysis is that this negotiation has, in the past, taken place in the absence of actual evidence. Looking at the data, we can see that our PALTS should probably be tweaked and there is room for win/win between the two parties. Another thing we can look into w
  14. Yes, that's right. I sometimes see contracting as a type of 'queuing system.' Work comes in, its gets done, and goes out. My favorite analogy is a car mechanic's shop or law office. I think our HCA would like to compare ourselves to 'the norm' first. Given the type of contracting work we do, is our process normal compared to other contract agencies?
  15. @Vern Edwards I'm a fed, this is work. My HCA is interested in making use of office's contract, financial and operational data. He wants us to go exploring into this data and see what we find, and to see if this data can help answer some long-standing questions. Basically, I bucket the data into three types. Outputs (contract actions), Inputs (staff, hours) and Process (PALT, stuff like that). We've got these data, but we just starting to make use of it. Analysis is descriptive, or versions of this model [Input] x [Process] = [Output]. Examples: Our data shows tha
  • Create New...