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This link to a new Defense Procurement and Contracting Policy Memo was just added to the policy tab.  A Department of Defense Office of Inspector General (DoDIG) Summary Report, DODIG-2017-004, titled “Inspections of DoD Facilities and Military Housing and audits of Base Operations and Support Services Contracts” identified challenges associated with: (1) contract documentation and requirements, and (2) oversight of BOSS contracts in contingency environments. Additionally, the DoDIG noted that contractor performance was not properly assessed, contractors were not held accountable for poor performance, and the Department did not receive the best value for money spent on the contracts the DoDIG reviewed. 

DoD contracting officers are reminded that minimum requirements and clauses for performance work statements/statements of work, as well as minimum standards to measure those requirements in the quality assurance surveillance plan, are described in Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Part 11 and Defense FAR Supplement (DFARS) Part 211, “Describing Agency Needs,” FAR Subpart 37.6, “Performance-Based Acquisition,” DFARS 237.102-77, “Acquisition requirements roadmap tool,” DFARS 237.172 “Service contracts surveillance,” and FAR Subpart 46.4 and DFARS Subpart 246.4 “Government Contract Quality Assurance.”
  
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How do you ID and train your workforce performing acquisition functions, including non-acquisition personnel?  Good question as I just posted DoDD 3020.49 to the policy page here on the ACE for Services.  While this directive focuses on Operational Contract Support (OCS), it includes the requirement at 2.9(b) to do just that.

2.9. SECRETARIES OF THE MILITARY DEPARTMENTS.
The Secretaries of the Military Departments:
a. Support the planning, orchestration, integration, and synchronization of, and prepare for and execute, OCS during applicable operations in accordance with DoD Instruction 3020.41.
b. Identify and train personnel, both acquisition and non-acquisition, who plan, develop, and monitor contract requirements, oversee contracts and contractors, and ensure drawdown and close-out activities are conducted during applicable operations.

DLA has analyzed the training available and needed for their Functional Services Managers (FSMs).  They have proposed two credentials for FSMs at an entry and more advanced level, based on complexity of acquisitions assigned, to ensure training minimums are maintained.  For more information on FSM credentialling, see the Blog section here on the ACE for Services.  See the DAU Credentials page for available credentials including those for Services Acquisitions. 

What would you propose for training PMs or FSMs for contracted services including OCS?


  
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Mr. Terry Carpenter, program executive officer for NBIS spoke in DAU’s first virtual Hot Topic Forum held Wednesday, May 20. He was featured in the DAU Alumni Association newsletter.  For those unfamiliar, the NBIS is the “Federal wide information technology service which will be used to conduct suitability, security, and credentialing investigations for all Federal civilians, military members, and government contractors.” It is operated and maintained by the Defense Counterintelligence and Security Agency and has been chronicled here on the ACE for Services as this newest defense agency (DCSA) was created. 

  
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ACQ 1650 replaces ACQ 165 which is now closed to new students and will retire (close) at the end of this Fiscal Year for any current students. The Services Acquisition Credential for Acquisition Workforce members (CACQ 002) will use both ACQ 165 and ACQ 1650; ACQ 165 will be valid through FY21 for CACQ 002.

The Terminal Learning Objectives (TLOs) are: TLO - Recognize the role of services acquisitions in building and maintaining the mission capability of the Department of Defense (DoD) and essential elements of successful, best value services acquisitions. TLO - Recognize when DoDI 5000.74 applies. TLO - Identify the positions that establish policies, guidelines, and procedures for acquisitions of contracted services across DoD. TLO - Identify key management roles and responsibilities when acquiring contracted services to support DoD requirements. TLO - Recognize what is accomplished during each phase of the Service Acquisition Process. TLO - Describe services portfolio management, the resulting benefits, the services portfolio management taxonomy, and the roles of key portfolio management participants. TLO - Describe the requirements development, validation, prioritization, and oversight processes, including the role of the Services Requirements Review Board (SRRB), requirements development team, Acquisition Strategy process, peer reviews, independent management reviews, and performance management metrics. TLO - Recognize IT services acquisition requirements related to Clinger-Cohen Act (CCA) compliance, alignment with DoD's Information Enterprise Architectures, enterprise IT services, and IT services management. TLO - Recognize requirements related to cybersecurity, personally identifiable information (PII), cloud computing services, accessibility of IT services, commercial cellular services, and commercial IT.  

To apply for this course see the ACQ 1650 concept card.


  
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What's Category Management (CM)?  It's a little different in the Department of Defense than what you will find on GSA's Acquisition Hallways, or in OMB policy and the Air Force has been making great strides with their CM program.  The DoD's implementation of Category Management (CM) consists of a structured, data-driven business practice whereby the organization broadly and strategically analyzes and manages common categories of spend with an enterprise-wide focus in order to eliminate redundancies, increase efficiencies and enhance mission effectiveness.  Given the Air Force's success, we ought to examin their processes and luckily we can bring you an introduction to CM courtesy of the USAF.  By completing the Introduction to Air Force Category Management, you will learn about the history of CM in the Federal government and US Air Force (USAF), the USAF 4 principles of CM, Roles and Responsibilities, and the 6 Step CM Process.  Upon successful completion, you will receive a certificate awarding you 1 CLP.  Please note, you must complete this training in one session.  Allow yourselft at least an hour to do so.

  
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​Rapid Deployment Training for DoDI 5000.74, Defense Acquisition of Services is now available from DAU's RDT page along with recently released instruction 5000.80 and 5000.81 on Mid Tier Acquisition and Urgent Capabilities, respectively.  Click here for the 5000.74 RDT.

  
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​The first offering of ACQ305 starts March 24-27 2020 at DAU's Fort Belvoir, VA campus; it's available to schedule now in your component's scheduling system.  This new 3.5 Day services acquisition course uses an IT Services scenario, but will help the student to lead or participate on a multi-functional team (MFT) acquiring any service.  The DoD Handbook for the Training and Development of the Services Acquisition Handbook recommends ACQ 305 for Functional Service Managers (FSMs).  In the future, ACQ 305 may be required for the planned FSM credential which would join the two existing services acquisition credentials for MFT members.  

  
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The new DoDI 5000.74 Defense Acquisition of Services was signed today (Jan. 10, 2020). The Adaptive Acquisition Framework, Services pathway was updated and reflects this new issuance.

  
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​GAO recently (Sep 26, 2019) released GAO-19-608, National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) Could Better Manage Potential Risks of Contractors Performing Inherently Governmental Functions.  Take note of GAO's two recommendations.  First, that contracting officers document their oversight plans for certain contracts and then verify that they're following through with those plans to ensure contractors are not performing inherently governmental functions.  GAO noted the turnover of contracting personnel and thus an empahsis on documenting plans to help the next contracting officer or contracting officer's representative (COR).  

  
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GAO found DOD has identified some of the non-acquisition personnel performing certain acquisition-related duties, but has not made as much progress identifying those involved in services acquisitions.  Additionally, GAO found that DOD also has not comprehensively considered the acquisition-related training needs for non-acquisition personnel.  GAO makes two recommendations that DOD: (1) designate an official responsible for identifying non-acquisition personnel contributing to services acquisitions, and (2) ensure components provide DAU comprehensive information about non-acquisition personnel training needs. DOD concurred with the recommendations.  [GAO-19-556 released Sep. 5, 2019, reissued with revisions on Oct. 2, 2019.]

  
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This session from May 2019 discussed some of the newest acquisition direction coming from Congress (via laws), the President (via executive orders), changes to the Federal Acquisition Regulations (via Acquisition Circulars) and OSD leaders (via memorandums and regulations). There are so many changes continually being directed that we will Cherry Pick the newest direction that will have real world procedural impacts. In many cases the direction is so new that DoD is still formulating an approach to properly execute the new direction.  Follow the link to obtain a copy of this presentation.
  
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​DAU's new app includes the convenience of push notifications and alert indicators for new content; personalization settings to see only the content you desire; maps and directions to DAU locations which integrate with your device's native capabilities, and offline viewing of content.


The prototype's six modules include:  News, Maps, Training, Info, Resources and Augmented Reality (AR) Maps.


  
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​Critical Initiatives for Streamlined, Rapid, Iterative Acquisition Approaches (85 min.).  HON Alan R. Shaffer, Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition and Sustainment keynote address at the 2019 DAU Symposium.

  
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Do you know the Spend Under Management Tiers?  Here are the defininitions, but you may want to check out the SUM ACQuipedia article for more info.​

•Tier 3, Best-in-Class (BIC) Solutions – Spending managed at the Government-wide level through use of BIC solutions that have been identified through a collaborative interagency process by acquisition category experts within the Government as offering the best pricing and terms and conditions within the Federal marketplace and reflecting the strongest contract management practices.

•Tier 2, Multi-Agency Solutions – Dollars obligated on multi-agency contracts that satisfy rigorous standards set for leadership, strategy, data, tools, and metrics.  Although not BIC solutions, they reflect strong contract management practices, including data and information sharing across agencies, and use of cross-agency metrics.

•Tier 1, Mandatory-Use Agency-Wide Solutions – Dollars obligated on agency-wide contracts with mandatory-use or mandatory-consideration policies, along with standards set for data-sharing, including data analysis, information sharing across the agency, and use of metrics that are defined, tracked and publicized.

•Tier 0, Spend NOT Aligned to Category Management Principals.  Tier 0 involves purchasing in a decentralized manner and not conforming to category management principles, including strategic oversight and disciplined consideration of performance data to understand prices paid by other Federal customers or metrics to improve results. Dollars obligated on contracts that do not fit into one of the three tiers above. Agencies should analyze Tier 0 spend to find opportunities for shifting to higher-tier solutions.

  
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GSA's beta.SAM.gov is an initiative to consolidate 10 legacy federal award systems (including the System for Award Management (SAM),  Wage Determinations OnLine (WDOL.gov), FBO, FPDS, and CPARS) into a single website.  Currently, the beta site is not the authoritative site (thus the beta).  Once all functionallity from the legacy site is transitioned, beta.SAM.gov will become SAM.gov and the legacy site will be a candidate for decommissioning.  

What's the timeline?  As an example, later in FY2019, WDOL.gov will redirect users to beta.SAM.gov to find wage determinations. For more information, please visit beta.SAM.gov or check out this excellent video. (https://youtu.be/5uciZ431AGo)



10/1/2020
  
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Past Performance Information Retrieval System (PPIRS) data has been merged into the Contract Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS). CPARS.gov is now the official source for past performance information.

On January 15, 2019, the PPIRS name will no longer be used except in the Federal Acquisition Regulation.

Click here <https://interact.gsa.gov/blog/update-cparsppirs-merger> to read more about the CPARS/PPIRS merger on GSA’s Interact page.

  
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Link provided on a Defense News article of acting Chief Management Officer's inteview.  Identifies Five key initiatives for finding greater savings: category management, buying goods and services differently, IT and business systems, logistics and supply chain acquisition, and healthcare management. ​

  
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DAU's Service Acquisition Mall (SAM), which provides tools and templates to create performance-based service acquisition requirements, has recently received a major update. Below is a summary of what's different in the new release:

·         Completely redesigned navigation--go from process to tools to policy

·         Updated content across the site

·         Embedded links to related DAU training and resources

·         Redesigned user interface

·         Responsive design for use on any device

A familiar tool that used to be exclusively available on SAM, the Acquisition Requirements Roadmap Tool (ARRT), is now available from DAU's tools catalog.  What's new is that you can download the ARRT Suite immediately--no registration and no waiting for an email.  You'll still need a valid DoD certificate to unpack ARRT from its cybersecurity wrapper.  This is explained in the updated help guides for each of the tools that make up the ARRT Suite.  You can still find helpful videos on using ARRT on SAM.

  
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​Section 843 of the FY18 National Defense Authorization Act requires a number of elements affecting the Non-Acquisition Workforce in Services Acquisitions.  One element requires a report on a number of elements.  One of the elements is what additional acquisition training is needed, what the positions are that need the training and what are the challenges in delivering this training.  What do you think?  What's your position and what acquisition training do you need?  What are your challenges in getting this training?

  
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​Find the CEA Overview by following the link in this announcement!

  
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This is a reminder that Military Department, Joint Command, and 4th Estate agency Senior Services Managers shall electronically submit a Services Acquisition Workshop (SAW) five-year forecast to:   osd.pentagon.ousd-atl.mbx.services-acquisition@mail.mil  and to SAW@dau.mil by 1 October 2018 (and annually thereafter). 

The five-year forecast shall provide the projected number of SAWs for each fiscal year (FY19 to FY23) including requirement names. 

Any additional or more specific information is not required, but would be appreciated.  There is no specific format for the forecast, but using an Excel spreadsheet is recommended.

Please see DPAP Memo dated 20 OCT 2017, which includes the latest thresholds which began in mid-April 2018. 

**Purpose:  This information will be provided to Congress and OSD Senior Leadership including the Reform Management Group (RMG), when requested, and will assist OSD and DAU with planning, tracking and resourcing SAWs.

  
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The GSA Alliant 2 GWAC is now available to use. OMB named Alliant 2 GWAC a Best-in-Class for Information Technology Solutions!  The Effective Date is July 1, 2018. The Period of Performance and Ordering Period is a 5 multiyear base term through June 30, 2023 plus a 5 multiyear option period through June 30, 2028.

  
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​GAO-18-237SP provides data concerning overall protest filings for FY17.  Most prevalent reasons for sustaining protests during FY17 were: (1) unreasonable technical evaluation; (2) unreasonable past performance evaluation; (3) unreasonable cost or price evaluation; (4) inadequate documentation of the record; and (5) flawed selection decision.

  
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​GAO publishes the final rule for Bid Protests for Government Contracts, effective 1 May 2018. Electronic Protest Docketing System (EPDS) will become the exclusive way to file protests.  A $350 filling fee as aulthorized by the Act to cover the cost of the electronic filing system.  Additional details may be found in the Federal Register GAO Protest Rules by folling the link [note, you may have to open this announcement in order to access the link].

  
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Engaging with Industry, March 2, 2018​

Excellent info on engaging with industry that update's OMBs series of Myth Busting memos.

  
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State of the Information Analysis Centers, 2017.  The Information Analysis Centers (IACs) made notable strides in FY17 supporting the Department's research and development (R&D) goals across their 21 technical focus areas. From the integration of nuclear planning application tools to canine simulators and hagfish slime, IAC contracts supported a wide array of technology innovations to advance national defense priorities. With over $1.4 billion in R&D work done in FY17 (exceeding FY16's $1.3 billion), the IACs continue to demonstrate the importance of knowledge re-use, (i.e., the efficient exploitation of knowledge gained from past research and its application to new problems, a key tenet and best practice of the IACs).

  
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​What's new in Category Management?  Effective immediately, agencies shall leverage the Best-in-Class mandatory contract sourcing solution for package delivery services (NGDS). NGDS contract, pricing, and related information on package delivery services are available on the Transportation and Logistics Services Hallway on the General Services Administration Acquisition Gateway.

  
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This new handbook was released on July 14, 2017.  Section 803 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2017, Public Law 114-328, requires the SecDef to issue guidance to address the training and development of the DoD workforce engaged in the procurement of services, including personnel not designated as members of the defense acquisition workforce.  The handbook provides guidance and recommendations the total workforce may follow to improve proficiency in procuring services.  ​

  
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​New AFI dated 11 May 2017

  
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The Acquisition Requirements Roadmap Tool (ARRT) Suite has new versions that deployed on 1 April 2017.  ​

ARRT Suite: the suite is a collection of tools that help you build strategic elements of your acquisition documents by walking you through structured processes.

ARRT Requirements Definition (ARRT-RD) is a tool used to write performance-based requirements following the Requirements Roadmap process.  Using the tool, you can create Performance Work Statements (PWS), Quality Assurance Surveillance Plans (QASP), & Performance Requirement Summaries (PRS). Version 4.3 deployed.

ARRT Evaluation Factors (ARRT-EF) provides a simple, structured approach for developing your contract source selection factors. It walks you through a step by step process to set your factors and subfactors, describe what will be evaluated, and set their relative importance. Version 2.3 deployed.

ARRT Performance Assessment (ARRT-PA) allows you to monitor and track contractor performance based on your PWS and
supports incentives documentation.  Use it to generate contractor performance assessment reports (CPARs).  Version 2.1 deployed.

ARRT Cost Estimation (ARRT-CE) helps you develop your independent government cost estimate (IGCE).  It uses an interview approach and provides cost estimation assistance for your acquisition, capturing labor, overhead, other direct costs (ODCs) etc.