Keeping Your IDIQ Team on the Same Page

Having your IDIQ vehicle information documented correctly and in one easily accessible for the team place brings many benefits to your proposal development process, contributing to better communication and collaboration among team members, more efficient use of scarce resources, and increased probability of winning. The Task Order Manual is one of the most appropriate documents for this, but whether you put together an extensive plan or just a short informational paper, make sure that you include the following minimum necessary information:

  1. Vehicle Name. Having the proper IDIQ name in one spot is handy, as sometimes an abbreviated name becomes jargon and teams tend to forget what the vehicle was called in the first place.
  2. Overview of the Vehicle. The easiest place to find narrative vehicle description is the introductory or background part of the Statement of Work for the vehicle. Scrub this text instead of cutting and pasting it as is. Sometimes the language is unclear, and you may want to streamline it. Plus, you may want to separate out some of the information and put it in the fields below so that it is not redundant. The easiest place to find narrative vehicle description is the introductory or background part of the Statement of Work for the vehicle. Scrub this text instead of cutting and pasting it as is. Sometimes the language is unclear, and you may want to streamline it. Plus, you may want to separate out some of the information and put it in the fields below so that it is not redundant.
  3. Type of the IDIQ. Explain how the government refers to this vehicle: multiple award contract (MAC), Governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC), enterprise-wide acquisition contract (EWAC), multiple award schedule (MAS), blanket purchase agreement (BPA), multiple award task order contract (MATOC), or other? As for the IDIQ specifics, provide information on how the vehicle is set up. For example, is this a small business set-aside, or an 8(a) vehicle? Has it been competed in multiple suites or lanes such as a small business set-aside portion and a large business portion? It is important to provide the particulars and the details about different parts of this IDIQ, if there are many. And, of course, do not forget to indicate which part of the IDIQ your Team won, if the IDIQ is not a straightforward single-agency/single-competition vehicle.
  4. Customer(s) Your Team is Serving. On a single-agency IDIQ, the customer is the agency or its department, or even the program under the department—whoever claims the ownership for this vehicle. It is the same as the issuing agency above. This is whom you addressed as the customer in your IDIQ proposal. In this case you may even want to include the organization chart and show specific individuals by name. If this is a GWAC or a MAC, the customer may be the administering agency. For example, for the CIOSP-III GWAC, the National Institutes of Health (NIH)’s Information Technology Acquisition and Assessment Center (NITAAC) is a federal Executive Agent authorized by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to administer GWACs for information technology procurement for any federal civilian or DOD agency. Do specify what you define as a customer in your IDIQ’s case. Be explicit! Remember, this document is for people who are newly added to the team and may not know much about this program—and this information will get them up to speed in no time.
  5. Customer(s) and End User(s) This Vehicle is Serving. There may be multiple beneficiaries or levels of beneficiaries. For example, you may be serving the Fire Support Command and Control (FSC2), under Project Manager Mission Command (PM MC), Program Executive Office Command Control and Communications Tactical. The beneficiaries would be the U.S. Army, Joint, and Coalition Commanders. The more explicit you are in explaining who the beneficiaries are, the better. The ultimate customer is whom this agency serves and truly cares about. Although in the example above the beneficiaries are the U.S. Army, Joint, and Coalition Commanders, in the end, for the Department of Defense, the ultimate customer is always the warfighter. Or, for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the ultimate customers are the retirees, or those in need of public assistance. In the case of a GWAC or a MAC, it may be difficult to pinpoint one ultimate customer because there may be many. Delete this section in this case. Your company may also choose a strategy where you focus on just a handful of agencies. Then you would define your target agencies above, and list the ultimate customer for each. The more information you have about your customer in this document, the more effort it will save you down the road. You won’t want to be searching for this information while you are scrambling to do capture and proposal development for fast-turnaround task orders.
  6. Task Orders Contract Type(s). State whether the task orders or delivery orders may be Fixed Labor Categories and/or Time and Materials (T&M); Cost Plus Award Fee (CPAF), Cost Plus Fixed Fee (CPFF), Cost Plus Incentive Fee (CPIF), or some other cost plus flavor; or Firm Fixed Price (FFP) with or without the T&M element in it. You can find this information in the RFP for the IDIQ, and supplement it with capture intelligence you have gathered. It may be also helpful to elaborate on what types of work may be assigned to a certain contract type.
  7. IDIQ Ceiling Value. Customers usually inflate the ceiling value up to the limits of their authority because they never want to come up against it. The number becomes important, however, on a very active IDIQ towards the end of its period of performance; and may also be somewhat indicative of how much importance the agency is assigning to this vehicle and how much it plans to use it. There is also a minimum guaranteed value in an IDIQ. You may want to include this information here, but it may not be particularly useful to your IDIQ team as the amount is usually small.

Make sure to also add information on Limits on Task Order Value, IDIQ Period of Performance, Place(s) of Performance, Customer’s Website for this Vehicle. For the customer website, specify if anyone can access it or if only the Prime has the password. Also show what types of information can be gleaned from the website. For example, does it list all the task orders that have been awarded on this vehicle? Does it provide links to the competitors’ websites for this vehicle? Does it provide a conference schedule that the customer is going to attend, customer’s mission for this vehicle, and any other helpful resources?

You should also include information on more interesting aspects of the IDIQ such as award patterns, competitors, trends, customer’s likes and dislikes, your process, and so on. This way, you team will be on the same page, and it will contribute to your ability to get task orders.

 

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