BLOOMBERG EYES POTENTIAL MAC SHIFT
Are federal agencies turning more toward single-award indefinite delivery contracts? That’s the hypothesis put forward last week by Bloomberg Government as it tracked MAC and GWAC use, especially in the IT market segment. While it’s difficult to tell if the initial analysis actually shows a definitive trend, Bloomberg did raise some interesting points that would help explain a possible shift. Chief among them is the increased number of companies on many MAC vehicles. The strategy many agencies took of going “all award” to quickly resolve protests may be coming back to haunt them. The reasoning continues that if task orders have to be competed among such a large group of companies anyway, why not just go open market and set your own t’s and c’s? Multiple award contracts aren’t just one of many procurement approaches, though. Rules mandating competition and allowing for expedited ordering when IDIQ’s are used have been created since MAC’s first came about in the mid 1990’s. As such, there are built-in biases in favor of multiple award IDIQ contracts, advantages that going a single-award route don’t have. On top of that, the ranks of buying professionals aren’t exactly growing. Taxed buying offices need to use simplified acquisition methods to meet critical missions. While Bloomberg’s report makes an excellent point about keeping the size of companies on a specific MAC or GWAC manageable, don’t look for these contracts to fade into the sunset anytime soon.