Vendor Engagement Tips
Pre-solicitation Discussion
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Review Federal Acquisition Regulation Subpart
15.201” Exchanges with industry before receipt of
proposals”.
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FAR encourages exchange information with all interested
parties at the time we identify our need and as long as we
are consistent with procurement integrity rules.
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Interested parties
Potential offerors
 end users
 Government acquisition and supporting personnel
 Others involved in the conduct or outcome of the acquisition.
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Why are we encouraged to promote early exchanges of
information about future acquisitions?
Give offerors a better understanding of our requirements
 Allow us to have a better understanding of industry capabilities
 Allows potential offerors to see if they can satisfy the Government’s
requirements
 Enhancing our ability to get the best bang for the $ (fair and
reasonable price)
 Receive better proposal
 Allows: better technical and cost/price evaluation proposal
evaluation, negotiation, and contract award
 Why are we encouraged to promote early exchanges of information
about future acquisitions?
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Why exchange information with industry
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Identify and resolve concerns regarding the acquisition
strategy
proposed contract type
terms and conditions
acquisition planning schedules
feasibility of the requirement
performance requirements
statements of work/objectives/Performance work
statement
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Why exchange information with industry
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data requirements
suitability of the proposal instructions
evaluation criteria
approach for assessing past performance
information
availability of reference documents
any other industry concerns or questions.
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Some techniques to promote early exchanges of
information
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Industry or small business conferences/fairs
Public hearings
Market research
One-on-one meetings with potential offerors (any that are
substantially involved with potential contract terms and
conditions should include the contracting officer (reminder
not to violate procurement integrity requirements or FOIA
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Some techniques to promote early exchanges of
information
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Pre-solicitation notices
Draft RFPs/Specifications
RFIs: when we want to get information on price, delivery, other
market information, or capabilities for planning purposes. Note:
notices are not offers and cannot be accepted by the Government to
form a binding contract. No required format for RFIs.
Pre-solicitation or pre-proposal conferences
Site visits.
Note: Early exchange of information is done between industry,
government program manager, contracting officer, and other
stakeholder in the acquisition process
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How do we get information and solicit industry
feedback
Government portals (FBO, ebuy other agency portal, industry portals,
email faxes)
 business
fairs
 long-range procurement estimates
 Pre-bid or pre-proposal conferences
 meetings
 draft solicitations or draft specifications for review
 RFIs
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What are the rules?
Provide information Agency mission needs
Future requirements
Any time.
Note how to prevent the appearance of an unfair advantage:
 If you disclose specific information about a proposed acquisition that
is necessary for the preparation of proposals to one or more potential
offeror, must make the information available to the public as soon as
practicable, but not later than the next general release of information.
 Information provided to a potential offeror in response to its request
must not be disclosed if doing so would reveal the potential offeror’s
confidential business strategy (note procurement integrity and FOIA
rules)
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Pre-solicitation or pre-proposal conference, materials
distributed at the conference should be made available to all
potential offerors, upon request.
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Remember after the solicitation is released the CO is the
only focal point of any exchange with potential offerors.
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Recommendations
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