Can the Government review draft basis of estimates (BOEs) prior to proposal submittal?
Is this prohibited by the FAR?
Anything wrong with using this approach?
Could you provide an answer in less than a week?
The following response is based solely on the question and background information provided. As we do not have all the facts particular to your contract, program, and situation, we highly recommend, as applicable, you consult your leadership, contracting officer and/or Legal Office for guidance.
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Review of the FAR/DFARS does not prohibit the action you are describing in a situation where you have a single award IDIQ and are simply negotiating a delivery order for said IDIQ. Obviously, a multiple award IDIQ under competitive procedures would be much different. Without knowing your particular contractual structure, I assume there are certain pre-priced elements (e.g.,manhours or supplies/equipment with stated limits) in Section B of the IDIQ instrument and your technical representatives are simply evaluating the skill mix or equipment quantities in relation to the delivery order requirement (see FAR 16.505(a)(7)). My caution is to ensure that your engineering team does not use the draft to enter into informal negotiations with the contractor and, thereby, circumvent your authority to
establish a fair and reasonable price for the delivery order. I would also caution against taking this action if the contractor does not fully endorse the idea of providing a draft BOE. Often times, a BOE can go through
numerous iterations within a contractor's corporate staffing and what comes out at the end of the staffing process could be much different than the draft initially provided. This could engender confusion and irritation on the part of your engineering team who may be unfamiliar with the uncertainty of a draft BOE before it has been fully vetted through the contractor's hierarchy.