Government contractors in the technology space patiently anticipate the December 2020 release of the National Institutes of Health’s IT Acquisition and Assessment Center (NITAAC) Chief Information Officer – Solution and Partners 4 (CIO-SP4) request for proposal (RFP). Consistent with the word salad of agency and program names above (whew!), many companies are busy deciphering the myriad of pre-RFP information released by NITAAC throughout the year. The CIO-SP4 draft proposal evaluation “scorecard” gets considerable interest.
As contractors tally up their potential scores, many take note of the points allotted for approved or acceptable contractor business systems (under “Evaluation Factor 3- Management Approach”). In the draft scorecard, NITAAC appears to set aside points for an “approved” purchasing system, an “acceptable” estimating system and for simply having an earned value management system (EVMS). While the terms “approved” and “acceptable” have defined (but different) meanings in the government contracting regulations, the draft scorecard doesn’t address how contractors can obtain an “approval” or “acceptance” if they’re not currently part of the government’s audit and oversight regimen (e.g. non-traditional contractors, small business concerns, commercial service providers, etc.).
Though the requirements appear to create meaningful barriers to entry, the scorecard ambiguities may leave the door cracked for bidders to provide qualified, independent third-party evidence of their systems’ capabilities. Those closely watching the CIO-SP4 procurement await new clues or cues in the final RFP for options or opportunities to achieve these make-or-break business system points.
Baker Tilly’s government contractor advisory practice has over 50 professionals nationwide serving the unique needs of government contractors. We have hands-on experience not only in guiding contractors through the federal procurement process, but also in helping contractors to manage business systems and related controls. We can help design, document analyze and improve your business systems readying you to meet government regulatory requirements, expectations and scrutiny. Our team of advisors can help you prepare for CIO-SP4 business system success by providing contractor business system compliance evaluations and independent assessment reports, self-score evaluations and proposal preparation support.
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