Review of the Army Procurement Practices in Europe

B-132969: Published: Jun 11, 1979. Publicly Released: Jun 11, 1979.

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A review of Army procurement practices in Germany included the procedures and practices for requirements determination, bid solicitation and evaluation, contract award, and contract administration. The review was directed primarily toward real property repair and maintenance contracts because of the diversity of the type work performed and the magnitude of contract procurements, which amounted to about $92 million out of a total $461 million in fiscal year 1978. Particular emphasis was given to requirements-type repair and maintenance contracts because of the complexities involved in developing realistic requirements and monitoring contractors' performance during the contract administration phase.

The review identified some weaknesses in the procurement process. United States Army, Europe, needs to define work requirements to improve work scheduling, reduce contract costs, and insure that the lowest qualified bidder receives the award. The accuracy of government fair cost estimates should be improved so that funding requirements can be determined and bid proposals evaluated. Bid solicitation and evaluation procedures should be improved in order to ensure that a contractor has the capability to perform, contractors are aware of all unique contract features, the potential for splitting contract awards is realized, a sound basis exists for negotiating with contractors, all available information is used to evaluate bid proposals, and unsuccessful bidders are provided with sufficient information to enable them to determine whether to compete for future contracts and to prepare more responsive bids. The monitoring of contractors' performance should be improved to insure that work specifications are met and that the work is completed before payment is made. In order to prevent problem contractors from receiving future awards, enforcement of contract provisions and evaluation of contractors' performance should be improved. The funding allocation should be better planned in order to avoid the fiscal year-end crunch which adversely affects the quality of work specifications, cost estimates, bid proposal evaluation, and contractor performance monitoring. Finally, the effectiveness of procurement audits by internal review groups should be improved.

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