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For a small to moderate-sized software acquisition, the customer has typically selected the software required and a term sheet/vendor quote has been proposed. The job of the Contracting Officer (KO) is to try to ensure that the deal’s terms represent Best Value to the Government and execute that acquisition. Typically, time, funding, and resources are constrained and the vendor’s quote and the contractual terms and conditions require quick turn-around time.

In this reactive situation, the Rapid Assessment Checklist can be used to ensure that best practices are followed, unfavorable Terms and Conditions are avoided, and fair pricing is obtained. This will yield fair and reasonable Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and will help ensure that under the circumstances, Best value is obtained. Under rapid assessment, the requirement fit analysis will have been performed by the program and technical team prior to submitting the acquisition request to the contracting officer.

This is an image explaining how best value is achieved when the total cost of ownership is balanced against the best solution to fit the requirements of the program and securing the best price and the best terms and conditions. However, in a rapid assessment, it is not expected to perform the requirements/fit analysis so that box is grayed out.

The Rapid Assessment Checklist provides a high-level guide to determine if Best value has been obtained or how to achieve additional value through research and negotiating. In this constrained, reactive approach, you should focus on Acquisition Price, Terms and Conditions, and Life Cycle Cost/Total Cost of Ownership.