Acquisition of Services
How to use this site
Each page in this pathway presents a wealth of curated knowledge from acquisition policies, guides, templates, training, reports, websites, case studies, and other resources. It also provides a framework for functional experts and practitioners across DoD to contribute to the collective knowledge base. This site aggregates official DoD policies, guides, references, and more.
DoD and Service policy is indicated by a BLUE vertical line.
Directly quoted material is preceeded with a link to the Reference Source.
“It’s all about understanding the requirements, communicating expectations and driving toward a common purpose.”
Watch this video clip about the overview of the Service Acquisition Process:
Services Requirements Review Boards (SRRBs)
Reference Source: DODI 5000.74 Defense Acquisition of Services, Section 4.3
DoD Components will use an SRRB process for services acquisitions with an estimated total value $10 million or more as required by Section 2330 of Title 10, U.S.C. For an IDIQ contract, this includes both the base contract and any task orders of $10 million or more. Although not required, decision authorities should consider screening for requirements of special interest with an estimated total value below $10 million which may benefit from the SRRB process. An SRRB will review requirements for services acquisitions and is led by the organization that requires those services.
Reference Source: DAG Chapter 10, 4.2 Services Requirements Review Boards, Jan 2020
SRRBs serve as a structured review process chaired by senior leaders to inform, assess, and support trade-off decisions regarding the cost, schedule, and performance for the acquisition of services. While SRRBs typically focus on contractor-provided services, a services requirements review also helps inform the decision to use organic capabilities (government civilians or military) vs. contracting for the required service.
There is no specific format for SRRBs, but there are, however, specific focus areas listed in the DoDI 5000.74 that allow each organization to tailor the process to meet unique missions and needs. A robust SRRB process includes, but is not limited to, the following common characteristics:
- Active leadership from both acquisition and operational chains of command
- Focus on the requirements (the need) as opposed to the contract (the means of fulfillment)
- Led by the requiring activity
- Executed at least annually; more often as needed
- Leverages multifunctional teams
- Identifies efficiencies, cost savings, and best practices
Additionally, SRRBs are most effective when the entire leadership team is present during all presentations and discussions. This provides an opportunity to hear and understand the connectivity and relative prioritization of all organizational requirements, which often leads to improved outcomes from the SRRB. In executing SRRBs, organizations may achieve the following outcomes:
- Elimination of partial or entire non-value-added (or limited-marginal-value) contracted services capabilities
- Identification and elimination of redundant contracted capabilities
- Restructured work allocation
- Re-competing new requirements that better align to mission and marketplace
- Improved alignment of labor categories to work provided
- Opportunities for strategic sourcing of services capabilities
- Identification of inherently governmental activities not suitable for contracted services
A major outcome of every SRRB should be a prioritized list of existing and anticipated requirements (both funded and unfunded). While every organization will have different specifics and orders of importance, all should include assessments of:
- Mission criticality
- Overall life cycle cost
- Marginal cost of performance decreases or increases
- Inherently governmental/ closely related to inherently governmental
- Inappropriate personal services
- Industrial base
- Requirements management impacts (workforce makeup, etc.)
Ultimately, the benefit of validating requirements via SRRBs is the active management of services to ensure cost-effective, efficient application of resources to meet mission requirements. In this time of declining budgets and of sequestration, SRRBs provide tools to assess relative values of services and to make prudent, cost-effective trade-offs without compromising mission capabilities.
Reference Source: ACQuipedia, Service Requirements Review Board
SRRB Reviews. The reviews must take place at least once a year. They should be held with greater frequency when requirements need to be reviewed and prioritized to support budget decisions, manpower reviews, and other acquisition issues. SRRB reviews shall be chaired by the decision authority, who may be a program manager (PM), warranted contracting officer, or other designated decision authority. Participants must include all stakeholders, e.g., requirements owners, functional leaders, financial, contracting, legal, small business, logisticians, and manpower and personnel officials. Validation of requirements to the SRRB are often provided by the customer. Approval by the SRRB decision authority is documented in the acquisition strategy. Title 10, United States Code (U.S.C.), Section 2330 provides the authority for establishing requirements processes for the acquisition of services.
SRRB Process. Requirements must be validated by the appropriate requiring activity authority as SRRB chair, often, but not always, the customer (in accordance with DoD Component procedures), before the approval of the acquisition strategy. The seniority of the SRRB authority will be commensurate with the complexity, contract value, and performance risk associated with the services requirement. The SRRB will:
- Increase visibility of, and collaboration on, services requirements among all stakeholders.
- Validate requirements before a contract is awarded.
- Provide for prioritization of services requirements to support funding decisions.
- Increase collaboration among stakeholders on key strategy decisions to optimize services acquisitions and enable efficiencies.
- Foster proactive management by the Components for services acquisitions.
SRRB Considerations. SRRBs provide a process for assessing, reviewing, and validating services requirements by senior leaders. Requirements reviews should include (with appropriate tailoring), but not be limited to:
- Mission Need. Explanation of the mission need for the requirement and the outcomes to be achieved from acquiring services.
- Workforce Analysis. How the requirement is being and was previously satisfied, including why it cannot be fulfilled with military or civilian personnel. Coordination with the Component Manpower and Personnel officials should be done in accordance with DODD 1100.4 “Guidance for Manpower Management”. The analysis should also take into consideration guidance outlined in DoD Instruction 1100.22, “Policy and Procedures for Determining Workforce Mix,” and DoDI 7041.04 “Estimating and Comparing the Full Costs of Civilian and Active Duty Military Manpower and Contract Support”.
- Strategic Alignment. How the requirement for services supports the broader organizational mission.
- Relationship to Other Requirements. How the requirement for services impacts other requirements of the Component (positively or negatively).
- Prioritization. A determination as to whether the requirement for services is a lower priority requirement that can be reduced or eliminated with savings transferred to higher priority objectives or mission requirements.
- Market Research. The nature and extent of market research conducted, including any applicable benefit analysis performed for bundling or consolidation.
Requirements approval should be obtained from the SRRB chair before any acquisition action is initiated, unless directed otherwise by the decision authority. SRRB approval will be documented in the acquisition plan.
A note on metrics and tripwires. Specific metrics and tripwires can be tailored to the specific needs of the government customer for the service and the requirement. However, the metrics or tripwires must track and measure performance effectively, support and inform acquisition planning for new contracts, contract renewals, and contract re-competes, and be considered during the SRRB review and approval process.
Reference Source: Contracting Cone
The Contracting Cone presents the full spectrum of FAR and non-FAR based contracting solutions available for consideration.
The following contracting strategies below may be particularly well-suited for services:
- Federal Supply Schedules (FAR Part 8.4)
- Indefinite Delivery Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) (FAR Part 16.5)
- Commercial Items (FAR Part 12)
- Small Business (FAR Part 19)