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CFPB Report: 2013-IE-C-004 March 28, 2013

CFPB Contract Solicitation and Selection Processes Facilitate FAR Compliance, but Opportunities Exist to Strengthen Internal Controls

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Other Matter for Management's Consideration

CFPB program officials may benefit from a more structured and detailed training program, especially when procurement team members have limited time to advise program officials throughout the procurement process. The Office of Procurement has provided (1) roundtable discussions with contracting officer representatives to discuss various topics, including acquisition planning, market research, and source selection processes; (2) informal training to program officials through "lunch-and-learn" sessions that provided information on, for example, the organization of the Office of Procurement and the procurement process;
(3) advisory support and templates to facilitate procurement activities; and (4) monthly reports to staff with information such as contract awards, procurement forecasts, procurement metrics, and contractor performance. Nonetheless, completing the procurement templates, according to a program official, was challenging at times since contracting was not an area of expertise for the official. In addition, for the program officials who worked on some of the contracts we reviewed, those procurements had been their first experience in federal contracting. Thus, a more formal procurement training program may further facilitate the program officials' involvement in the contracting process.