The Proper Use of Consultants, Experts, and Contractors
Nov 15, 1978
An Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Bulletin provided guidelines concerning the use of consultants as well as a definition of consultant services to be used uniformly by all Federal agencies. These guidelines discuss how agencies are to make certain changes in reporting their use of consultants to the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and to a new contract data system. Within the next few months, new information will be available to show the extent to which the Government uses various types of consultant services and their cost. Every agency in the executive branch has begun to uniquely identify to CSC each of three categories of employees they hire to provide consultant services. However, this new way of tracking consultant employees applies only to individuals hired after October 1, 1978. There is still much data that will not be available from CSC, including how many days the consultants worked, their daily rate of pay, total annual compensation, and which consultant hiring authority was used by the agency. The Federal Procurement Data System operated by the Department of Defense will provide the first accurate information on the total number of consultant contracts over $10,000. This information will include: the agency awarding the contract, extent of competition, name of consultant firm, total dollar value, and other details. For the first time, there will be one central repository of information on every consultant contract as defined in the OMB Bulletin.