The Source Selection Bootcamp®
A Path to Innovation, Efficiency, and Sound Decisions
through Concepts, Principles, and Critical Thinking
The Federal Acquisition Regulation requires that agencies plan acquisitions, including the conduct of source selections. We know that source selection planners tend to be practical people. They want to design a process that will produce a good decision within a reasonable time, that will pass any review, that will withstand any protest, and that will ultimately lead to the achievement of the acquisition objective. So we have designed a course to explain how to do that.
There are two basic ways to plan a source selection (1) by cutting and pasting from previous plans and solicitations and (2) by critically thinking things through from scratch.
While cutting and pasting avoids “reinventing the wheel” and can save time up front, it also impedes critical thinking and spreads the use of inefficient processes that produce poor outcomes. After proposals arrive and evaluation begins, planners who cut and paste may find that they did not receive the information they need about offerors and their offers and are confronted with questions that they cannot answer because they did not think critically and from scratch. They may find that they have used terms and evaluation factors that they did not fully define and cannot clearly explain, and which must be worked out by evaluators while in the middle of things. That situation can lead to internal disagreements and to inconsistent, unreasonable, and indefensible findings and decisions.
The Source Selection Bootcamp® is designed to prepare acquisition personnel to plan source selections through critical thinking. It covers the selection and development of evaluation factors for award, evaluation process design, and solicitation preparation.
The course is not another review of regulations and protest decisions. The emphasis is on explication of the fundamental concepts and principles of sound source selection decisionmaking. It is designed to help planners facilitate and expedite the work of evaluators and decision makers. Attendees will be shown how to design a process that is simple, efficient, and fast, stripping from it all unnecessary and unproductive steps, and using innovative labor-saving and time-saving techniques.
The course is suitable for all personnel who will participate in any competitive acquisition process other than sealed bidding, including processes conducted pursuant to FAR Parts 12, 13, 15, or 35, and FAR Subparts 8.4, 16.5, 36.3, or 36.6. It is taught on site, through presentations, case studies, exercises, and guided discussions. Attendance is limited to 25 persons. The instructors are subject matter experts who are experienced in the conduct of source selections.
There are no prerequisites. However, prospective students should have a basic familiarity with the various methods of contracting other than sealed bidding and of the general processes of solicitation, offer (or quotation), and award.
Course length: Three full days, 9:00 am am to 3:00 pm, with a one hour open discussion/study hall at the end of each day.