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This image defines the four key phases of the best value process (Gather, Analyze, Strategize and Negotiate). It identifies the phase in which the user has selected. Gather Analyze Straregize

Work to Best Value, Within Range
After establishing your negotiation plan, you can use Best Value Negotiations Range within the TCO Workbook as a living document. Review the Software Provider’s Negotiating Position document – it provides a review of critical deal elements from the Vendor’s point of view. You can use that knowledge to prepare for trade-offs in negotiations.

Use TCO Methodology to Evaluate Life-Cycle Price Value
Use the TCO Workbook as a living document. As you proceed with negotiations, continue to enter data into the TCO Workbook to track TCO/Life-Cycle Cost. This is a great framework in which to perform trade-off analysis and track Best Value progress.

Obtain all “Must Haves”
Obtain the “Must Haves”, but keep documentation identifying the trade-offs made and/or any additional price paid and TCO impact of obtaining the “Must Haves”. Post-award, justification of additional fees paid or trade-offs made may be required. Utilize the Transactional Deal Points (TDP) Worksheet to capture the salient points of your contract for reporting and entry into the benchmark database.

By proactively planning the acquisition, allowing sufficient time, clearly defining requirements, using existing contracts, researching market data, and refining negotiation strategies, you will ensure you obtain Best value for your customer and the Government at-large.

While the proactive approach is always valuable and generally provides better value than the reactive approach, it is critical that it be used for large, multimillion dollar enterprise acquisitions. The amount of money that will be spent initially and the potential to not fully protect the Government from future usage issues and/or unplanned costs necessitate a thorough, forward looking and all bases covered approach.