Friday, October 21, 2016

DoD Hotline Posters (revisited)

Department of Defense (DoD) contractors are reminded that DFARS (DoD FAR Supplement) 203.1004 requires that the DoD-IG (Inspector General) Hotline Poster be posted in a prominent location if awarded a contract in excess of $5.5 million. Non-DoD contractors have a similar requirement found in FAR 3.1004. Whether contractors have a threshold contract or not, we believe its a good idea for all contractors to display hotline posters. It is integral to good internal controls.

DoD Contractors can download the DoD-IG Hotline Poster here.

The specific wording of the requirement reads as follows:
The Contractor shall display prominently the DoD fraud, waste, and abuse hotline poster prepared by the DoD Office of the Inspector General, in effect at the time of contract award, in common work areas within business segments performing work under Department of Defense (DoD contracts.
A recent change to the clause applies to contracts performed outside of the United States. This provision states:
For contracts performed outside the United States, when security concerns can be appropriately demonstrated, the contracting officer may provide the contractor the option to publicize the program to contractor personnel in a manner other than public display of the poster, such as private employee written instructions and briefings.
There is some confusion over whether displaying an electronic version of the poster on a company website used as a method of providing information to employees is an acceptable alternative to displaying the poster in a prominent location. Electronic postings are not acceptable alternatives to displaying posters in prominent locations. That notion that it was acceptable may have come from the FAR version of the Hotline Poster clause (FAR 52.203-14) which states:
Additionally, if the Contractor maintains a company website as a method of providing information to employees, the Contractor shall display an electronic version of the poster(s) at the website (underscore added).
The company website is an additive requirement, not an alternative requirement.

The FAR clause does not apply to DoD contractors however. It is replaced by DFARS 252.203-7004 which contains no corresponding language pertaining to a company website.

You may have had contracting officers tell you the company website is an acceptable alternative. That's probably incorrect guidance.

So, get those hotline posters posted.

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