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Government Contracting101


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Jeff Sneddon has attended every GRO-Biz conference. He is a wealth of knowledge when it comes to government contracting! Learn the basics on government contracting.

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Government Contracting101

  1. 1. 2010 Government Resources and Opportunities for Business Conference Jeffrey W. Sneddon Supervisory Contract Specialist Yellowstone National Park
  2. 2. What you should learn <ul><li>What it takes to do business with the government </li></ul><ul><li>How to get started, what is required </li></ul><ul><li>How to find your market in the government </li></ul><ul><li>Understanding the market </li></ul><ul><li>What has the government purchased </li></ul><ul><li>Can you be competitive </li></ul><ul><li>Preparing bids/proposals </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-Post Award Requirements </li></ul><ul><li>Most government business is done online, learn where and how </li></ul><ul><li>How to fund and understand opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>How to get paid and submit invoices </li></ul><ul><li>Sub-Contracting </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>Contractor </li></ul><ul><li>A business, or corporation which provides supplies, services, or construction to another entity under terms specified in a contract. The contractor is responsible for the means and methods to be used in the execution of the project in accordance with the contract documents. Contractor ownership is willing to accept a high level of personal, professional or financial risk to pursue opportunity </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Contracting Officer (CO) </li></ul><ul><li>A Federal Employee delegated authority pursuant to the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) to obligate Government funds, award, administer, and terminate contracts. </li></ul>
  5. 5. CO RESPONSIBILITIES <ul><li>- Sign contracts </li></ul><ul><li>Obligate Government Funds </li></ul><ul><li>Commit Government Property </li></ul><ul><li>Authorize Contract Deviations </li></ul><ul><li>Direct Changes </li></ul><ul><li>Suspend or Terminate Performance </li></ul><ul><li>Recoup Funds from Contractor </li></ul><ul><li>Suspend Payment to Contractor </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that Contractors receive impartial, fair and equitable treatment. </li></ul><ul><li>Comply with: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Code of Federal Regulation (CFR); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR); </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Executive Orders (E.O.) ; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Department of the Interior (DOI) Regulations; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>National Park Service (NPS) Regulations and Instructions; and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Other applicable governmental laws and regulations. </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>CONTRACT SPECIALIST </li></ul><ul><li>A Contracting Officer who serves as an authorized representative of the awarding Contracting Officer and is responsible for the management, monitoring, and many other aspects of the contract. </li></ul><ul><li>PURCHASING AGENT </li></ul><ul><li>A Purchasing Agent is a Contracting Officer, with delegated authority to make small purchases for supplies and non-personal services. </li></ul><ul><li>A small purchase is generally $100,000 or less on the open market and can be larger on a GSA schedule contract. </li></ul>
  7. 7. CONTRACTING OFFICER’S REPRESENTATIVE (COR) <ul><li>A person who is delegated SPECIFIC AUTHORITY, in writing, from the Contracting Officer to oversee a particular contract. </li></ul>
  8. 8. COR RESPONSIBILITIES <ul><li>Ensure that requirements are clearly specified and defined </li></ul><ul><li>Ensure that quality standards are provided and met </li></ul><ul><li>Provide for a detailed Independent Government Estimate (IGE) </li></ul><ul><li>Monitor the Contractor’s technical progress </li></ul><ul><li>Interpret the Scope of Work </li></ul><ul><li>Perform technical evaluations </li></ul><ul><li>Perform technical inspection and acceptance </li></ul><ul><li>Assist the Contracting Officer in the resolution of technical problems </li></ul><ul><li>NOT AUTHORIZED TO EFFECT CONTRACT CHANGES OR OBLIGATE GOVERNMENT MONEY!!!! </li></ul>
  9. 9. STANDARD OF CONDUCT <ul><li>The business ethics of all who are charged with administration and expenditure of public funds must be above reproach at all times. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Gov/Contractor Relationships <ul><li>Maintain objectivity and a professional working relationship </li></ul><ul><li>All communications in writing to create an audit trail </li></ul><ul><li>Government will conduct performance reviews </li></ul><ul><li>Contractor motivated by profit motive vs agency mission </li></ul><ul><li>Government close holds information </li></ul><ul><li>Lengthy statements of work with an attempt to document every possible situation, process, regulation, service, and expectation </li></ul><ul><li>Request for Proposal describes services and scope of work in great detail </li></ul><ul><li>Contract administration role vs partner role </li></ul><ul><li>Only acceptable relationship is a contractual one </li></ul><ul><li>Expert role assigned to government employee </li></ul><ul><li>An adversarial relationship between government and contractor may develop </li></ul>
  11. 11. Customer Responsibilities <ul><li>  We consider teamwork an essential part of the acquisition process. An informed customer is our best customer. The following are a few customer responsibilities. </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid unauthorized commitments </li></ul><ul><li>Develop accurate, independent cost estimates </li></ul><ul><li>Plan ahead for your requirements by allowing adequate contract administrative lead-time </li></ul><ul><li>Develop adequate purchase descriptions, specifications or statements of work </li></ul><ul><li>Properly prepare purchase requests to include sufficient funding </li></ul><ul><li>Provide proper justification when restricting competition or seeking special contractual actions </li></ul><ul><li>Perform timely follow-up and quality assurance actions </li></ul><ul><li>Promptly sign and forward contract acceptance documents to the paying office </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul>
  12. 12. WHAT IS THE FAR? Federal Acquisition Regulation <ul><li>The primary document that establishes policies and procedures for acquisition by all Executive Agencies. </li></ul>
  13. 13. WHAT IS A CONTRACT? <ul><li>A contract is a means of communication </li></ul><ul><li>A contract is a promise for a promise </li></ul><ul><li>It includes five elements </li></ul><ul><li>- offer, acceptance, consideration, </li></ul><ul><li>legal substance and competent parties </li></ul><ul><li>May be oral or written </li></ul><ul><li>Must have a “Meeting of the Minds” </li></ul>
  14. 14. CONTRACT TYPES <ul><li>FIRM-FIXED-PRICE (99%) </li></ul><ul><li>** Lump Sum or Unit Pricing </li></ul><ul><li>COST REIMBURSEMENT (1%) </li></ul>
  15. 15. FIRM-FIXED-PRICE <ul><li>The most common form of contract used in the Government </li></ul><ul><li>The most preferred by the Government </li></ul><ul><li>Majority of the risk is assumed by the Contractor </li></ul><ul><li>Price is set in advance and not altered. </li></ul><ul><li>Used for acquiring both goods and services </li></ul>
  16. 20. Components of the Acquisition Cycle <ul><li>Generate Acquisition Plan </li></ul><ul><li>Scope of Work </li></ul><ul><li>Source Selection Plan </li></ul><ul><li>Acquisition Package Preparation includes PR, SOW and IGCE </li></ul><ul><li>Purchase Request (submission and acceptance) </li></ul><ul><li>Justification and approval for Other than Full and Open Competition </li></ul><ul><li>Advertising the requirement </li></ul><ul><li>Legal review and approval (as required) </li></ul><ul><li>Issuance of the solicitation </li></ul><ul><li>Evaluation of proposals </li></ul><ul><li>Obtaining audits (as required) </li></ul><ul><li>Pre-award Surveys </li></ul><ul><li>Development of pre-negotiation plan </li></ul><ul><li>Completion of negotiations (Revised Proposal) </li></ul><ul><li>Contract preparation </li></ul><ul><li>Contract review and approval (as required) </li></ul><ul><li>Legal review and approval (as required) </li></ul><ul><li>Contract award </li></ul><ul><li>Notification to unsuccessful offerors/Debriefings </li></ul><ul><li>Contract Performance/Administrations </li></ul><ul><li>Contract Close Out </li></ul>
  17. 21. Purchase Description <ul><li>The supplies/services must be described in a manner that will encourage maximum competition and eliminate any restrictive features that limit acceptable quotes to one Contractor’s product. </li></ul>
  18. 22. ANTI-DEFICIENCY ACT <ul><li>Provides that no Government Officer or employee shall authorize or create any obligation, or make any expenditure , in excess of the funds available, or in advance of being appropriated . </li></ul>
  19. 23. GSA Schedules <ul><li>GSA Schedules are contracts that are awarded by GSA and are available for use by Government agencies. </li></ul><ul><li>Each schedule has multiple awards with Contractors that meet the minimum requirements. </li></ul><ul><li>Regulations require fair opportunity (three or more quotes) when placing orders against a GSA schedule. </li></ul><ul><li>Award using best value or best price. </li></ul>
  20. 24. <ul><li>Although government contractors use many of the same business practices as commercial contractors, a number of characteristics clearly differentiate the two. </li></ul>
  21. 25. Government Contracting Commercial Contracting Federal policy established formal competition criteria for purchases or procurements Company determines competition criteria Congress appropriates all available funds Many sources provide funds Laws, directives, policies, and procedural regulations define procurement actions Company determines procurement actions with legal boundaries
  22. 26. Government Contracting Commercial Contracting Federal contracts contain extensive clauses, many of which are “take-it-or-leave-it” Standard commercial code and those clauses agreed to by the parties regulate performance The government may terminate a contract for failure to make progress Commercial regulations (such as Uniform Commercial Code) ensure adequate performance The government may terminate a contract for its convenience Termination for convenience is not available to commercial contractors
  23. 27. Government Contracting Commercial Contracting Federal contract must incorporate social and economic policies Social pressures typically dictate company policies; however, some policies are required by law The government may use social and economic incentives Commercial contractors rarely use incentive contracts Federal law prohibits gratuities Company policy determines gratuities The government may invoke liquidated damages to contractors for noncompliance Penalties are illegal in commercial contracts
  24. 28. TEN REASONS WHY PROCUREMENT ACTIONS ARE DELAYED… <ul><li>10. Type of Procurement </li></ul><ul><li>9. Requirement for Pre-Proposal Conference </li></ul><ul><li>8. Requirement for a Pre-Proposal Site Visit </li></ul><ul><li>7. Justification for Other Than Full and Open Competition and/or Sole Source Challenge </li></ul><ul><li>6. Complexity of Procurement </li></ul><ul><li>5. Poor Scope of Work or Specifications </li></ul><ul><li>4. Change to Requirement </li></ul><ul><li>3. Protests </li></ul><ul><li>2. Lack of adequate funding </li></ul><ul><li>1. Incomplete Purchase Request Package!!! </li></ul>
  25. 29. Questions?
  26. 30. <ul><li>&quot;United States procurement policy aspires to obtain quality supplies, services, and construction economically, efficiently, and in a timely manner. Federal procurement law, regulation, and policy seek to procure the best value for the taxpayer in a system that is transparent, maximizes competition, and ensures integrity. At the same time, our government utilizes its purchasing power as a means of promoting numerous social policies.” </li></ul>
  27. 31. “ Government contracts further goals such as fostering small businesses, overcoming regional unemployment, assisting minority workers, ensuring fair treatment of employees, protecting the environment, and, where appropriate, providing preferences to domestic and other special sources of supply, such as the blind and severely handicapped. These policies, and the requirements that implement them, impose certain burdens upon the procurement process, most noticeably by adding complexity to our statutes, regulations, and policy guidance. “