Peer 1 (Brad): I think that the topic we have for out forum this week is one of great importance that often gets overlooked. The ability for a program manager or a group of deciding individuals to select the correct source when engaging the initial processes of a contract is paramount in the eventual success of that contract. I have seen this go very well, and I have seen this part of the system abused. The biggest issues I have seen have been with contracts that end up being reoccurring contracts. For instance, a company will be contracted for two years to perform aircraft maintenance at a squadron. The contract will require a certain number of personnel that hold a certain level of qualifications to satisfy the needs of the maintenance described in the contract. This company will put in the lowest bid and meet or exceed those needs for the first 18 months. Then the company will lay off a quarter of the personnel saving the money that they wouldve paid out in those salaries. This voids that contractors ability to renew the contract, but it is not permanent. A new company who had done the same thing before the last company will come in and use the same practices for the following two years. Then the company that they replaced for bad practices will come in and do the same thing again. I see this frequently and its almost like the companies have a monopoly even though they use bad business practices. Ive also seen the number one thing that I always have issues with which was choosing Boeing to have the defense contract over Lockheed Martin which had existing contracts. I feel that somebodys pockets definitely get aligned on that one. I feel that somebodys pockets definitely got lined on that one. I look forward to hearing what everybody has to say.
Peer 2 (Reed): Out of the three topics provided, I decided to talk about Awards and my experience with that topic. I currently work at a Regional Contracting Office for the United States Marine Corps. In that office, more specifically, I work in the strategic branch. This branch deals with the Purchase Requests (PR’s) that come into to the office valued under the or SAT. This means that all of the Purchase Requests that my coworkers and I work on are completed utilizing the Simplified Acquisition Procedures laid out in the FAR. The majority of the contract types that we deal with are or FFP. These are usually extremely straight forward and require very minimal administrative work in comparison to other contract types. Our award process is simple for the most part. We clearly state our evaluation procedures in our Request for Quotes that we put out. Upon receiving said quotes, we evaluate them based on the factors explained in the RFQ. We then send off all of the quotes received for that requirement to the customer for them to complete a technical evaluation worksheet. This is, simply put, is a worksheet that the out to tell us if they deem the quote acceptable or unacceptable. Once we receive those worksheets back from the customer, we make the award decision based off of the evaluation factors as well as if the company was found to be acceptable or not. After a decision is made, the unsuccessful offerors are informed that they were not chosen and the successful offeror is informed of their victory and the contract award paperwork (contract) is dispersed out respectively.
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