Contracting Cone

Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) FAR Part 16.5

IDIQ contracts provide a method to order from existing agency indefinite-delivery contracts as well as contracts awarded by another agency (i.e. Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs) and Multi-Agency Contracts (MACs)).

Existing IDIQ contracts should be considered prior to establishing a new agency specific single or multiple award IDIQ vehicle. IDIQ ordering procedures are described at FAR 16.505 and DFARS 216.505.

Establishing an agency unique IDIQ contract may be an appropriate business decision to support a portfolio of programs when recurring needs are anticipated. New IDIQ contracts can be awarded to a single or multiple vendors:

Government-wide Acquisition Contracts (GWACs)

A Government-wide Acquisition Contract (GWAC) is a task-order or delivery-order contract for information technology established by one agency for Government-wide use that is operated:

  • By an executive agent designated by the Office of Management and Budget pursuant to 40 U.S.C. §11302(e),or
  • Under a delegation of procurement authority issued by the General Services Administration (GSA). The Economy Act does not apply to orders under a Government-wide acquisition contract


Multi-Agency Contracts (MACs)

A Multi-Agency Contract (MAC) is a task-order or delivery-order contract established by one agency for use by Government agencies to obtain supplies and services, consistent with the Economy Act. MACs include contracts for information technology established pursuant to 40 U.S.C. §11314(a)(2).

The Economy Act  is applicable to orders placed under MACs, with the exception of MACs for information technology that are established pursuant to the Clinger-Cohen Act.  The Economy Act applies when more specific statutory authority does not exist. Examples of more specific authority are 40 U.S.C. §501 for the Federal Supply Schedules, and 40 U.S.C §11302(e) for GWACs.

Establishing a New GWAC or MAC

In accordance with FAR Part 17.502-1(b), a business-case analysis must be prepared by the servicing agency and approved in accordance with the Office of Federal Procurement Policy (OFPP) Business Case Guidance.  The business-case analysis shall:

  • Consider strategies for the effective participation of small businesses during acquisition planning (FAR Part 7.103(u))
  • Detail the administration of such contract, including an analysis of all direct and indirect costs to the Government of awarding and administering such contract
  • Describe the impact such contract will have on the ability of the Government to leverage its purchasing power, e.g., will it have a negative effect because it dilutes other existing contracts
  • Include an analysis concluding that there is a need for establishing the multi-agency contract; and
  • Document roles and responsibilities in the administration of the contract


Common Applications
  • All types of supplies and services, to include construction
  • Defense Business Systems
  • Solutions and technologies
  • IT software and products
  • IT systems
  • Weapon systems
  • Aircraft
  • Ships
  • Space systems
  • Research and development
  • Advisory and assistance services
  • Engineering services
  • Special studies




Access to pre-negotiated prices and labor rates reduces procurement lead time and provides opportunity for further negotiated price discounts Conditions and scope limitations (work scope, ceiling, and period of performance) imposed on GWAC/MAC contract vehicle may reduce flexibility in acquiring products and services
Ability to use variety of pricing arrangements within scope of MAC/GWAC contract vehicle increases opportunity to deliver products and services quickly Fair Opportunity order above FAR threshold is protestable
Wide latitude to streamline or create evaluation process reduces procurement lead time  
Streamlined ordering procedures within existing GWAC/MAC contract vehicle reduces lead time to award  
Access to pre-vetted, qualified contractors reduces performance risk in execution  



  • Scope determination required (work, period of performance, and ceiling)
  • Fair opportunity required for a delivery-order or task-order exceeding micro-purchase threshold unless one of the following statutory exceptions applies:
      • The agency need for the supplies or services is so urgent that providing a fair opportunity would result in unacceptable delays
      • Only one awardee is capable of providing the supplies or services required at the level of quality required because the supplies or services ordered are unique or highly specialized
      • The order must be issued on a sole-source basis in the interest of economy and efficiency because it is a logical follow-on to an order already issued under the contract, provided that all awardees were given a fair opportunity to be considered for the original order
      • It is necessary to place an order to satisfy a minimum guarantee
      • For orders exceeding the simplified acquisition threshold, a statute expressly authorizes or requires that the purchase be made from a specified source
      • In accordance with section 1331 of Public Law 111-240 (15 U.S.C. 644(r)), contracting officers may, at their discretion, set aside orders for any of the small business concerns identified in FAR Part 19.000(a)(3). When setting aside orders for small business concerns, the specific small business program eligibility requirements identified in FAR Part 19 apply.