Tuesday, February 3, 2015

DCAA Jettisons Two of its Checklists

We're not sure when it happened. One day they were there and the next time we looked for them, they were gone. We're referring to DCAA's (Defense Contract Audit Agency) checklists for Contract Pricing Proposal Adequacy and Forward Pricing Rate Proposal Adequacy.

Here's what you see when you try to bring them up on DCAA's website.

Actually, this is a good thing. The dueling checklists, although very similar, were confusing for contractors. The auditors would go to contractors and use the DCAA checklists even though the contractor had run its contract proposal or forward pricing rate proposal through the DoD checklists.

The DoD checklists are improved over what DCAA was using. The DoD checklists have gone through the regulatory process where public comments were solicited, considered, and in some cases, resulted in changes to the proposed checklists. DCAA's checklists on the other hand were cobbled together in-house and carried a heavy dose of what DCAA considered necessary to achieve adequate proposals and rate proposals. Its not that DCAA's checklists were bad - they just needed some refinement.

Checklists have a place in proposal preparation but just because a proposal "passes" a checklist, does not mean that it is adequate. There can still be many deficiencies, inconsistencies, omissions, and illogical or nonsensical narrative to befall a proposal submission. The larger and more complex the proposal, the more chance for such stuff to sneak into the final cut.

These checklists are mandatory for DoD proposals so use them. Once a proposal passes the checklist, it will at least get to the next level of consideration.

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