10 Success Factors for Federal Contracting Professionals

Like many other segments of the Federal Government, as the rapid changes in technology impact the way we do business, the differences between contracting in the global commercial market and government continue to broaden. Providing the best possible outcomes for the American people will necessitate Federal leaders working to minimizing these differences and building a more competitive public service workforce.

In Preparing for the Future of Contracting, a whitepaper recently published by the National Contract Management Association (NCMA) and Management Concepts, 20 senior leaders in the contracting profession were asked how contracting professionals can add value in the rapidly changing environment they will face in the coming years. Their responses centered around the culture of government contracting and the efficient and effective integration of technology and innovation.

The discussion centered around how government can proactively address the unprecedented cultural and technological change we are seeing now, and anticipate in the future, with the realization that failing to develop actionable solutions may reduce the value proposition of the profession. Many of the changes will significantly impact the role of contracting professionals. In addition to shifting from rigid, methodical process-centered rule enforcers to creative, agile mission-centered solution makers, the contracting professionals who will be most likely to thrive in the future:

  1. Possesses a holistic understanding of the mission
  2. Think outside the box and have excellent critical thinking, decision-making, problem-solving, collaboration, and especially communication skills in addition to technical skills
  3. View the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) as a flexible tool and find creative ways to innovate within it to reach new levels of mission success
  4. Take on the role of business manager, able to communicate and persuade up, down, and across chains of authority to provide effective creative solutions
  5. Engage in contributing and analyzing data to draw conclusions about markets, industries, and solutions, significantly improving efficiency and insight
  6. Manage acquisitions using the simplest approach possible and allowable under the rules
  7. Favor business acumen and sound judgment over reliance on established processes
  8. Identify the most cost-effective solutions and the best mechanism to move an acquisition forward
  9. Direct acquisition solutions that make good business sense while accomplishing the mission
  10. Pursue continuous professional development through just-in-time training

In addition to addressing the expectations for contract professionals, the senior leaders provided a wealth of information about how they are preparing their workforces for this new reality. The whitepaper lists detailed next steps, contracting community examples, and quotes that can aid other organizations as they develop strategies to address their future needs. While this posting was based entirely on the content of Preparing for the Future of Contracting, it only provides a hint of its comprehensive coverage. Click here to get a complimentary copy today. Management concepts also offers training courses for contracting team leaders – learn more today!

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Written by:
Natalie Komitsky
Acquisition & Contracting



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