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Contractor Performance Assessment Report (CPAR) and the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS)

APMT 019
Alternate Definition

The CPAR provides source selection officials with information on contractor past performance. Officials prepare CPARs in the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS) at least annually. CPARS hosts a suite of web-enabled applications that are used to document contractor and grantee performance information that is required by the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR).

Alternate Definition Source

DFARS 242.1502

General Information

The purpose of a CPAR is to provide source selection officials with information on contractor past performance. Officials (normally the Contracting Officer’s Representative and Contracting Officer) prepare CPARs in the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS). See para. 3.0, Responsibilities in "Guidance for the Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS)" for all agency and contractor responsibilities. From FAR 15.304, past performance shall be evaluated in all source selections for negotiated competitive acquisitions expected to exceed the simplified acquisition threshold. FAR 42.1502 states that past performance evaluations shall be prepared at least annually and at the time the work under a contract or order is completed. These evaluations are generally for the entity, division, or unit that performed the contract or order. Past performance information shall be entered into CPARS, the Government-wide evaluation reporting tool for all past performance reports on contracts and orders.

The CPAR captures current, complete, and accurate Information on contractor performance that is then made available for use in source selections. This information supports best value source selection decisions to reward proven performers and to motivate contractors to perform. Additionally, the CPAR provides up-to-date documentation of a contractor’s ability to provide quality, on-time products and services that conform to contractual requirements and supports responsibility determinations of prospective contractors. When preparing the CPAR, it’s important to remember the information is pre-decisional in nature; treat contractor performance information as privileged source selection information including any working papers and electronic files. This information is not releasable under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA). The CPAR is accessible by government personnel with a need to know and by the contractor who is the subject of the assessment. Prior to January 2019, this information was retained in the Past Performance Information Retrieval System (PPIRS).  After January 2019, PPIRS was merged into CPARS and CPARS stores the information for 3 years after contract completion (6 Years for Architect-Engineer and Construction).

CPARS hosts a suite of web-enabled applications that are used to document contractor and grantee performance information that is required by the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). FAR Part 42 identifies requirements for documenting contractor performance assessments and evaluations for systems, non-systems, architect-engineer, and construction acquisitions. FAR Part 42 also requires documenting additional contractor performance information in the Federal Awardee Performance & Integrity Information System (FAPIIS), including Terminations for Cause or Default, DoD Determination of Contractor Fault, Defective Cost or Pricing Data, Information on Trafficking in Persons, and Subcontractor Payment Issues.

On December 12, 2022, the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS.gov) integrated with System for Award Management (SAM.gov) as part the ongoing Integrated Award Environment modernization. Integrity records previously available in FAPIIS will be found under Responsibility/Qualification (R/Q) in SAM.gov. This will provide users with a single access point for information about entity management, exclusions, and R/Q. Government personnel will continue to enter required data (e.g., non-responsibility determination, termination for default) into FAPIIS via the input module in CPARS.  (See DPC Policy Memo dtd 20221213)


The CPARS process establishes procedures for the collection and use of Past Performance Information (PPI) for all contracts/orders exceeding the thresholds listed in FAR 42.1502 and DFARS 242.1502.  The thresholds are in DoD Class Deviation 2013-O0018 until incorporated into the DFARS or rescinded.  For example, in the DoD, the threshold is >$1 million for services and information technology contracts.

CPARS-generated PPI is one of the tools used to communicate contractor strengths and weaknesses to source selection officials and Contracting Officers. Communication between the Government and contractor during the performance period is encouraged. The contractor performance evaluation contained in the CPARS is a method of recording contractor performance and is NOT the primary method for reporting performance information to the contractor (see best practices below). CPARS should be an objective report of the performance during a period against the contract/order requirements. Information in CPARS represents the contractor’s performance appraisal; therefore, the information to support the evaluation (including the rating and narrative to explain the rating) should accurately depict and correspond to the contractor’s performance. Use of the automated CPARS collection capability is aimed at reducing reliance on paper, improving the business process, and increasing efficiency. CPARS collects contractor performance information and is now the Government-wide performance information repository. CPARS hosts the input module to the Federal Awardee Performance and Integrity Information System (FAPIIS). Federal government agencies can retrieve PPI from CPARS at https://www.cpars.gov.

BEST PRACTICES

For the table of Evaluation Ratings Definitions including those for the subcontracting evaluation factor, see FAR 42.1503(h)(4), Table 42-1 -Evaluation Rating Definitions.

Department of the Navy (DON) Informal Performance Assessment Report (IPAR).  An IPAR done at a minimum quarterly, provides feedback to government and contractor management on the contractor’s performance, motivating early improvements and sustaining performance in accordance with the terms and conditions of the contract.  DON established the Informal Performance Assessment Reporting Requirement in January of 2001 for contracts valued at greater than $50M.  This requirement was rescinded in November of 2015; DON personnel shall follow the requirements within FAR 42.1502.  However, as a best practice consider the use of the quarterly reporting format using the evaluation ratings from Table 42-1.  An IPAR can be an important tool to motivate contractor performance and to improve communications between the government and the contractor.

The Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS) was created by the Naval Sea Logistics Center, Detachment Portsmouth in April 1998 to address the FAR requirement to collect past performance information for Federal contractors and to consider that past performance information in Federal source selections.