CONTRACT VEHICLES MAKE SENSE IF THEY HELP YOU REACH YOUR DESTINATION
Many government contractors expend considerable time and money pursuing Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) vehicles of all shapes and sizes. Merely having these vehicles, though, doesn’t guarantee a company any business. They’re often likened to a fishing license, but another good analogy is a car. Why buy more cars than you can use? Why buy cars that may not be reliable ways to reach your destination? There is certainly strong pressure on contractors to obtain multiple IDIQ contracts. Agency customers say, some accurately, that their agency will require a company to have a certain vehicle in order to sell to it. The Office of Management and Budget has gotten into the act by designating certain contract vehicles as “Best in Class”. This also puts pressure on agencies to use preferred contract vehicles. Contractors can’t be blamed for feeling the pressure to pursue each new contracting method. Before spending yet more bid and proposal money, though, calling a time out to see whether the vehicle matches how and to whom you sell is a best practice. How much business do you currently do with an agency developing its own IDIQ? Is the time and investment required to pursue that contract worth it relative to the business you do, or reasonably could do, with that agency? Does your company own other contract methods that the agency uses? Do you have good relationships in that agency? Looking at a set of circumstances, such as these, can help companies make better business decisions on whether or not one more arrow in their procurement quiver will help. IDIQ contracts are important ways to do business with federal contractors. Care should be taken, though, to ensure that any new vehicle will deliver business and not just be a high maintenance asset that seldom makes it out of the garage.