A mysterious Defense Department research project designed to test ways to encourage large contractors to hire small businesses earned a recommendation for permanent reauthorization from the Government Accountability Office on Monday, a move that surprised some inside the Pentagon and the small business community.
The 25-year-old Test Program for Negotiation of Comprehensive Small Business Subcontracting Plans, results for which the Pentagon has never reported to Congress or the public, in 2013 helped 12 participating companies avoid “about $18.5 million in costs through the use of single comprehensive subcontracting plans rather than multiple individual subcontracting plans,” the GAO said in a report mandated by the fiscal 2015 National Defense Authorization Act.
GAO found after reviewing contracting activities of a dozen firms, including defense giants Lockheed Martin Corp. and Northrop Grumman Corp., the companies had made “acceptable progress” toward enhancing small business opportunities 87 percent of the time, GAO found. “Participants also achieved a 72 percent success rate in increasing small business subcontracts in areas such as integrated circuits and information technology, thus addressing a concern among some small businesses that high-end technical work was not being subcontracted under the program.”
Keep reading this article at: http://www.govexec.com/defense/2015/11/obscure-pentagon-small-business-program-gets-boost-gao/123824
To see a list of current participants in DoD’s Test Program, go to: http://www.acq.osd.mil/osbp/sb/initiatives/subcontracting/participants.shtml