Government Property Management, Contracts Management, Program Management – Why do they need to communicate and coordinate closely?

This blog posted is contributed by Alex Barenblitt, CPPM, MBA. Alex leads the consulting practice for E-ISG Asset Intelligence on Government Property Management Business Processes


In my last blog post here, I argued that contract managers should really care about Government Property Management because the requirements around managing GFP in a contract can have significant implications for the cost and risks of the contract.

The reason that contract managers tend to underestimate the significance of Government Property Management is that Government Property Management often is viewed simply inventory management. That’s far from the truth. While the management and control of inventory is a critical element of the management of Government Property, it’s actually one of many.

Government Property Management is a discipline that implements and manages a Property Management System, with consists of ten “Property Outcomes”.  These outcomes include: Acquisition, Receiving and Identification, Records, Physical Inventories, Relief of Stewardship, Reports, Utilization, Maintenance, Subcontract Management and Contract Property Close-Out.  And each of these is governed by various FARS and DFARS (and other FAR supplements, as applicable) clauses and guidance that requires specialized training.

Very often Contracting Officers, Contracts Managers and Program Managers may not have a full understanding of the applicable regulations, what resources it takes to comply with them, or the potential impacts from failing to comply with them.  And many of these regulations have undergone significant changes in the last few years, with new Business Systems Rules that provide oversight authorities such as DCMA and DCAA with significant enforcement tools.

Contractors who use Government Furnished Property while performing the contracts, and those that build products and systems that are delivered to the Government must comply with a growing number of regulations and required processes.  For instance, the growing enforcement by DCMA of the implementation of Unique Identification (UID) in DoD is resulting in increased importance of this requirement.

So it is becoming more and more critical for Contracts Managers and Program Managers to work closely with Government Property Managers during proposal efforts and contract negotiation activities to ensure that the costs and capabilities to fully comply with all Property-related regulations are considered.  Necessary supporting infrastructure will be required (records system), along with processes, procedures and policies.  Failing to take these into account could result in unplanned cost overruns, or even payment withholds.

Government Property Managers can help make a strong contribution to efficient and effective operations in support of contract performance as a full member of the contract/program team.

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