Any government contractor that’s been in a meeting with government acquisition officials over the past several years has heard the term “PALT”.  Heads nodded, as if the term was already well-defined and understood to be part of the acquisition planning process.  This was not the case, though, until recently.  “PALT” – short for Procurement Administrative Lead Time” (not Procurement As Live Theater) – now has a concise definition and guiding benchmarks thanks to a memorandum from the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) in the closing days of the Trump Administration.  The new standard PALT definition is “the time between the date on which an initial solicitation for a contract or order is issued by a federal department or agency and the date of the award of the contract or order.”  This language is consistent with the underlying NDAA legislation directing OFPP to provide additional guidance.  PALT data for specific procurements will also be included on GSA’s Federal Procurement Data System – NG.  As such, it will be publicly available to contractors and others who can, in turn, use the information to guide their own business plans concerning a specific acquisition.  Longer-term, the intent of the PALT guidance is to find measurable, repeatable ways to reduce acquisition lead times.  OFPP believes that Best in Class (BIC) contracting has already saved millions and are optimistic that PALT data can lead to similar time savings