You Don’t Have Time to Fix Misaligned Processes That Bog Down Your Buys.
ASI Calms the Chaos With Standard Methods and Collaboration—No Muss, No Fuss.
Low-quality or missing Independent Government Cost Estimates (IGCEs) and lack of detail for solicitations were eroding the accuracy of proposal evaluations and the quality of relationships between program and procurement offices.
How could procurement staff determine whether vendors were bidding fair and reasonable prices? How could they weigh whether the level of effort proposed was adequate for the scope of work?
Program offices often didn’t share sufficient information about personnel, scope, contract type and period of performance to enable the procurement office to put together appropriate solicitation packages.
Relationships eased and cost estimating improved after ASI introduced standardized practices and templates for estimating costs.
We began engaging program offices and contracting officers early in developing cost estimates to collaborate on draft Work Breakdown Structures (WBS). We drilled into details with the program staff, to tease out every labor category likely to be involved, the appropriate contract type and to fully flesh out the scope.
ASI worked up customized cost-estimate templates that help relieve confusion among program staff about what information to include. The template has become standard for all IGCEs. The accompanying ASI-developed narrative provides context and additional details, allowing any employee to review a cost estimate and understand how it was developed.
At our urging, the agency now uses GSA Schedule labor rates as a benchmark for determining fair and reasonable pricing.
The IGCE transformation provides detailed cost information for comparing proposals and informs program budgeting. It also reveals key details that program offices once failed to provide to contracting officers.
Using the process and templates ASI helped them create, contracting professionals and program staff now produce defensible cost estimates that are accurate to within 1 percent to 3 percent of awarded value. That means the agency now knows whether it is getting price proposals that are appropriate for the work contemplated.
Collaborating on the IGCE process built rapport among ASI, contracting officers, and program staff that makes the acquisition process easier and smoother, freeing time and resources the agency can deploy to solve bigger problems and build procurement capability.