The Homeland Security Department (DHS) wants proofs or viable prototypes that demonstrate how artificial intelligence can support contracting officers as they conduct past performance evaluations and make effective use of data from the Contract Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS), according to a solicitation on the FedBizOpps website.
Run through the department’s commercial solutions opening pilot program to competitively procure innovative items, the solicitation was originally posted in early August but amended this week to include the government’s answers to submitted questions.
“An AI solution for CPARS may significantly assist contracting officers conducting past performance evaluations by identifying relevant past performance assessment records in a more accurate, consistent, faster and useful manner, reducing the administrative workload on contracting officers while increasing the quality of the outcome,” the solicitation states.
When selecting services over the simplified acquisition threshold, contracting officers are required to consider vendors’ past performance. CPARS is the central system federal officials use to collect and share contractor and vendor past performance information. But according to the solicitation, anecdotal evidence indicates that contracting officers face challenges trying to use the data for past performance evaluations, due primarily to the “volume of records and the inability to rapidly identify relevant reviews.”