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News | Sept. 30, 2016

DCMA, Rockwell Collins sign historic MOA

By Thomas Perry DCMA Public Affairs

FORT LEE, Va. - The Defense Contract Management Agency and Rockwell Collins signed a Memorandum of Agreement, or MOA, Sept. 21, establishing an improved process for procurement of commercial items for military application.

The MOA defines the agency’s expectations regarding information requirements of Rockwell Collins in support commercial item classification and price reasonableness.

“I am thrilled that Rockwell Collins and DCMA were able to come to terms on this first-ever commerciality MOA,” said Air Force Lt. Gen. Wendy Masiello, DCMA director. “This agreement sets forth the type of information and specific data that Rockwell Collins will provide to the government to support their commerciality assertions and item pricing. In doing so, this landmark agreement will greatly streamline the acquisition process for commercial and commercial-like items, and sets the standard by which future commerciality agreements will be measured.”

DCMA leadership has recently emphasized commercial item pricing efforts by launching a commercial item group June 30. According to the group’s director, Thomas Walker, the team was established to provide direct support regarding commercial item acquisitions to buying commands and DCMA administrative and procuring contracting officers.

“There are eight different types of commercial items,” said Walker. “We help our clients determine whether their acquisition meets one of those definitions and whether the price being paid is fair and reasonable as compared to the commercial marketplace.”

Similar agreements are being actively pursued by industry and the government to give government agencies greater access to commercial products and services, ultimately providing the warfighter with the latest technology at the best value. Items classified as non-commercial often require additional time to develop and are delivered at greater cost to both public and private sectors.

“DCMA is in the forefront of the Defense Department’s efforts to encourage and engage both non-traditional contractors as well as our traditional contractors in supplying critically needed technology, supplies and services to our warfighters,” said Steve Trautwein, a senior price and cost analyst with DCMA’s Cost and Pricing Center. “A critical piece of that is our commercial pricing group focused on serving as the department's experts in assessing proposals for commercial items as to their proper classification an ensuring we pay fair and reasonable prices. One of our approaches to streamlining both government and industry practices in this arena is to reach agreements on the processes we will follow and data to be provided in arriving at contractual agreements. DCMA has signed its first agreement and has several more in process.”

Phil Jasper, the executive vice president and chief operating officer for Government Systems at Rockwell Collins, believes the agreement will benefit all parties involved and ultimately result in better products.

“This agreement is an important step in eliminating current inefficiencies associated with determining whether or not an item is considered commercial,” said Jasper. “By having a clearer understanding up front, we can spend less time doing paperwork and more time getting state-of-the-art technologies in the field — ensuring that everyone wins.”

The MOA will be reviewed annually to ensure it remains mission relevant.