Some firms suffer amid COVID-19, while others benefit from prescient agencies.
The COVID-19 coronavirus has been a mixed bag for small business contractors working with the federal government. Some are facing unique challenges as they try to fulfill their contractual obligations amid site shutdowns, while others are able to meet their obligations relatively seamlessly under contracts designed for telework.
Small business problems range from workers’ compensation details to meeting contractual specifications when not allowed to work on government sites. These problems may be the tip of the iceberg as the government moves forward in the post-COVID-19 era, experts say.
Yet some contracting bodies lessened the impact by awarding contracts that allowed, or even encouraged, telework and other alternate workplace requirements. Ultimately, structuring future contracts along these lines, where applicable, may hold the key to prevent challenges if similar situations unfold.
Uncertainty is the overriding concern of federal small business contractors, says Forrest Burke, CEO of Connected Logistics. He relates that the federal government has shown flexibility in the move toward telework, and that flexibility has helped the transition become more seamless. But the top priority for many small businesses is to maintain their staff, and that often requires out-of-pocket outlays to keep people on payroll.
Keep reading this article at: https://www.afcea.org/content/small-business-contractors-experience-diverse-results-under-coronavirus
The Contracting Education Academy at Georgia Tech has established a webpage where all contract-related developments related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) are summarized. Find the page at: https://contractingacademy.gatech.edu/coronavirus-information-for-contracting-officers-and-contractors/