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Thoughts from one of our Subject Matter Experts
Link to the article that is referenced:
DoD Moving Away From LPTA for IT Acquisitions
The DoD vs LPTA
Over the past decade, the DoD has attempted to lower contracting costs across the spectrum. In some aspects, there has been some success such as with basic services. The area that it has crept into are highly skilled and/or higher demand areas such as Intelligence Analysis, Cyber and IT related services.
The 2019 National Defense Authorization Acts NDAA has proposed a rule in the Defense Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS), that further defines this. Section 813 recommends that utilizing LPTA should be avoided in many knowledge-based professional services.
These professional services are not commodities and lead to gaps in fulfilling contractual requirements due to lower pay, benefits and overall negatively impacting the mission. As many organizations have discovered a "low bid" may provide an initial lower cost (and high marks for Contracting Officer evaluations) but severely impact an organizations ability to function. The increase in time to in-process/out process personnel, along with training and not to mention a lower skill set that does not move the mission forward.
Many of the "low bid" hires will jump at the next opportunity for a decent size increase in pay, benefits or training. The LPTA companies are fully aware of their inability to adequately compensate their personnel. They utilize this opportunity to get "butts in seats" and establish a foothold.
Unfortunately, the time required to re-compete a contract for lack of performance is time-consuming (along with the acknowledgment that the wrong decision was made) results in the continued sub-par performance for the duration of the contract.
As the job pool is getting scarce quality comes with a price, but poor performance comes with a greater price--one that will have irrevocable consequences.
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