Abacus Technology’s well-established, award-winning core competencies in strategic planning/sourcing, workforce & manpower assessments, acquisition support, business process reengineering (BPR)/Lean Six Sigma (LSS) and the full spectrum of Commercial Services Management (CSM) practices provide an ideal match for most client needs. As a recognized leader in these key support areas, the Abacus Technology support team is fully capable of meeting the OMB and DoD goal of maximizing effectiveness, efficiencies, and savings throughout government. While still completing some in-progress competitive sourcing studies, we have fully embraced the holistic approach to improved performance and reduced costs advocated under the CSM guidance, evidenced by way of our current performance on several BPR initiatives. This support and understanding extends to the importance of reviewing all contracted services for possible in-sourcing as part of a "Total Force Management Strategy.” As underscored in the OMB Memo on ― "Managing the Multi-Sector Workforce" (dated 29 July 2009), agencies must establish a framework that is built on sound human capital planning—this should include an approach for understanding, analyzing, and determining the optimal blended workforce (military, civilians, and contractors). This is where our proven team can act as a force multiplier in assisting organizations by facilitating complete functional/organizational assessments in order to achieve program objectives with the optimum balance between program performance and costs.
Our talented staff brings years of experience and training to bear.
Our 26-year record of excellent project performance, as well as our trained and experienced staff, is widely recognized throughout the federal government. Notable customers, for whom we have provided advisory and assistance services in the conduct of reengineering, competitive sourcing and privatization studies, are:
- Department of Defense (DoD)
- Department of the Navy (CNIC and CNAF)
- U.S. Air Force (HQs, AFMC, AFPSC, AMC, ACC and AETC)
- U.S. Army (IMCOM)
- Department of Labor (DOL)
- Department of State (DOS)
- Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
- General Services Administration (GSA)
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
- Defense Logistics Agency (HQ DRMS)
- Department of Energy (DOE)
- Department of Treasury (DOT)
The Abacus-Offutt AFB A-76 Team was awarded the 2002 Presidential Quality Award for Excellence in the area of competitive sourcing. We were the only A-76 consultant within industry to share such a prestigious award with our government partners.
In recognition of our outstanding consulting partnership with the IRS, we earned the2003 IRS: Large Business Partner of the Year Award. Due in part to our contribution to the IRS in developing the PWS/QASP for the Area Distribution Center (ADC) competitive sourcing effort, the IRS was awarded the 2004 Presidential Quality Award for Excellence.
As one of the items on the President’s Management Agenda (PMA), Human Capital Management is necessary more than ever for Agencies struggling with management of a blended or multi-sector workforce (federal employees (military and civilian) and contractors). Agencies must:
- Institute a practice of systematic human capital management that is aligned with strategic plans and the budget
- Conduct workforce planning to identify current and future skills gaps in order to efficiently and effectively deploy the workforce
- Ensure human resources programs are strategically aligned, effective and efficient, and in compliance with applicable laws, rules, regulations and the (PMA)
- Align recruitment and retention strategies with workforce planning efforts to enhance the effectiveness- of these efforts and close position and competency gaps
- Ensure leadership continuity through comprehensive succession planning and leadership development programs, and opportunities
- Capture and share knowledge, and develop employee competencies to better accomplish the mission
- Improve individual and organizational performance
- Ensure a diverse workforce with the necessary skills to accomplish mission and strategic goals
- Develop and maintain effective working relationships with labor organizations
Abacus Technology is prepared to assist in addressing these and other issues related to your Strategic Human Capital Management program. We can assist in the areas of In-Sourcing, Organization/Staffing analysis, Multi-Sector Workforce analysis, and Position Management (including conducting Desk Audits, reviewing progression opportunities, and writing/revising position descriptions). In the past, to meet quotas for outsourcing, Agencies turned many functions over to a contracted workforce without knowledge of how this would eventually affect the rest of the organization. Obtaining the right blend of federal employees and contractors requires a close look at the overall organization. Before In-Sourcing opportunities are pursued, an Agency must assess the impact to the organization as a whole, to include the imbedded Civil Service workforce. How will the In-Sourced positions affect current grades, promotion potential, or morale? We believe Agencies must consider these and other Multi-Sector Workforce questions as part of their overall Human Capital Management approach.
The three recently-released Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Memos lay the groundwork for Agencies to establish In-Sourcing programs. However, they do not provide the details on how to manage such a massive effort. That is where Abacus Technology can help. We leverage our years of Organizational Analysis, Acquisition, and Position Management experience to assist you in building an In-Sourcing program that is fully integrated with your Human Capital Management efforts.
As part of an organization’s overall Human Capital Management program, In-Sourcing helps ensure successful mission accomplishment by determining the following: Do you have the right mix of personnel? Are the appropriate types of labor performing where they should be? Can you improve your organization through a shifting of resources? Are Commercial Services programs required in any of your functional areas? These questions are part of an overall Organizational Analysis which can help you determine the best method of accomplishing the mission.
Abacus Technology has developed Decision Trees, Responsibility Matrices, and Implementation Guides to assist Agencies in determining not only which functions to consider for possible In-Sourcing, but also how to manage the transition back to in-house resources where appropriate. Before In-Sourcing a function due to poor contractor performance (one of the possible reasons cited by OMB), you should consider whether the problem can be corrected through QAE/COR training or the addition of QAEs/CORs. An organization should also ensure the requirements are well understood by all parties. Basically, you should determine whether the poor performance can be corrected.
Once it is determined a function should be In-Sourced, you must consider how the establishment of multiple, new civil service positions will affect the existing workforce (career progression, supervisory ratios, morale, etc.). Some questions to ask are: Do facilities exist to support the new employees? Is Information Technology (IT) support available? If IT support is contracted, what is the effect? If the function being In-Sourced is large, will more support staff (finance, training, HR), be required? While the answers to these questions will not necessarily tell you whether or not to In-Source, they may affect the timing of those In-Sourcing efforts.
By leveraging our experience with Organizational and Cost Analysis, Acquisition, and Human Resource Management, combined with the unique tools we have developed, Abacus Technology will ensure your In-Sourcing efforts contribute to your organization’s long-term strategic goals, while keeping focus on a well-defined Human Capital Management Program.
Based on recent discussions with senior DoD procurement officials, we understand the push to in-source up to 10,000 Federal civilians to supplement the woefully undermanned acquisition workforce over the next five fiscal years. However, understanding these recruitment actions will take time, we stand ready to assist all Federal agencies.
Abacus Technology has been providing PWS, SOW, and SOO development support services, to include complementing quality assurance surveillance and performance/functional assessment plans, to numerous Federal agencies for more than 20 years. In addition, we have been providing other acquisition-related, value-added services to those same agencies which include, but are not limited to:
- Draft acquisition plans, source selection plans, justifications, RFPs, and awards
- Prepare solicitation packages and amendments
- Coordinate and facilitate admin/logistics support for pre-proposal conferences/Industry Day, and evaluations
- Prepare for discussions with offeror/oral presentations/Q&As
- Prepare source selection reports/briefings
- Draft pre-negotiation objectives and price negotiation memoranda/provide negotiation support
- Coordinate and facilitate admin/logistics support for debriefing offeror
- Prepare contract documentation for modifications
- Conduct Technical Evaluation Board training sessions
- Develop technical debriefing information
Closeout and Inventory Support
- Implement and track cost, schedule, and performance measures
- Respond to questions/inquiries on project performance
- Standardize invoice review
- Develop Award/Incentive Fee Plan and Service Level Agreements (SLAs)
Collectively, our support team has more than 80,000 man-hours of experience directly related to the above contract and acquisition support areas.
Abacus Technology has a solid reputation within DoD and throughout industry for excellence in providing consulting services. In fact, we are a recognized Best Value consultant on several GSA Schedules. One schedule in particular was established to provide the Government with world-class Management Oriented Business Integrated Services (MOBIS)—GS-10F-0145J. We have successfully performed numerous task orders under this schedule during the past 10 years. Most of these task orders (50+) were in support of Federal strategic sourcing studies, including acquisition support, and as a result, we have the relevant labor categories, skills, and experiences specifically oriented to DoD contracting efforts (to include experienced contracting support personnel with Government Contracting 1102 series knowledge, experience, and qualifications). We have routinely received praise for our superb project management, ability to easily integrate with the client’s staff/team, meet stringent timelines, and meet or exceed our client’s expectations.
Business Process Reengineering/High Performing Organizations (BPR/HPOs)
The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) now recognizes business process reengineering initiatives to improve internal operations, including those leading to the development of high performing organizations (HPOs), that use the same disciplined skills associated with competitive sourcing such as workload measurement, cost analysis, and human capital planning toward Green and Yellow standards in the Commercial Services area (formerly Competitive Sourcing).
Abacus Technology can help Agencies achieve their Business Process Reengineering (BPR) efforts by using Six Sigma techniques to identify critical processes, determine if customer requirements are being met, improve broken processes, estimate potential savings, and employ statistical tools to validate the results. This time-proven methodology is one of the key factors for OMB approval of the HPO. In addition, we can prepare the HPO Nomination Package for OMB including the PWS, QASP, Baseline Cost Report, baseline Performance Standards, projected cost savings (using COMPARE), and Quality Control Plan as well as the full details of our reengineering effort using Six Sigma principles.
Abacus Technology has several Six Sigma Certified professionals (from Green Belt to Master Black Belt) ready to assist with any reengineering effort. These individuals bring a wealth of experience, with several of the individuals having more than 20 years of BPR experience each.
Almost every one of the Most Efficient Organizations (MEOs) we have helped build over the last 25 years has involved some level of process reengineering. The techniques used include process flowcharting, control charts, brainstorming, benchmarking, affinity diagramming, and the 8-step problem solving model (unique to the Air Force Smart Operations-21 Program), and have produced savings in the millions of dollars on individual studies.
Abacus Technology helped prepare the HPO for the Federal Facilities Division responsible for the centralized management and operation of assigned federal buildings in the National Capital Region. We performed extensive benchmarking and conducted a thorough Impact Mapping exercise to determine the most efficient operation for the 340 FTEs under study.
To further illustrate our BPR capabilities, we have included the two below storyboards from past projects:
Abacus Technology's support team is fully capable of maximizing operational effectiveness and cost savings. Indeed, we support a broad approach to the OMB Circular A-76 process by also seeking out opportunities to achieve efficiencies in areas that are exempt from A-76 competitions. Under this holistic approach, our support team assists clients by facilitating "complete" functional/organizational assessments in order to achieve program objectives with the optimum balance between program performance and costs. To date, we have provided A-76 services in support of more than 60 studies, involving a wide variety of functions and covering tens of thousands of FTEs. This support provides us with a breadth of experience that is second to none.
Abacus Technology’s support team will provide the necessary expertise, advice, and assistance to support the development of a feasibility study and business case analysis (BCA) to determine the best business unit definition/packaging approach for the activity being considered for competitive sourcing. At a minimum, our team will address the first five steps in the preliminary planning phase as addressed in the most current OMBC A-76 guidance (May 29, 2003). These steps include scope, grouping, workload data and systems, baseline costs, and type of competition.
Performance Requirements Document/Performance Work Statement (PRD/PWS) Development:
Abacus Technology's support team will develop a truly performance-based requirements document that is both contractible and enforceable. Our tried and true methodology allows for innovation and creativity by both the in-house workforce or a commercial contractor by presenting government requirements in a manner that is not overly prescriptive (i.e., what must be done rather than how to do it).
Quality Assurance Surveillance Plan (QASP) Development:
After developing a solid PRD/PWS, the QASP is developed as a means of measuring contractor service. Our systematic analysis results in a QASP that, when followed, lets the government know if the service is being furnished as specified.
Most Efficient Organization (MEO)/Agency Tender Development:
Using the various methods available (e.g., benchmarking, flow process charting, cost-benefit analysis, Six Sigma statistical analysis, operational audit), the Abacus Technology support team will develop an MEO/Agency Tender that is competitive, executable, and thoroughly documented. This support also includes development of a Phase-in Plan (PIP) and Quality Control Plan (QCP).
Abacus Technology's costing analysts are highly proficient in the use of the COMPARE software, as well as fully cognizant of all DoD Costing Manual guidelines and Agency-specific regulations. Using these tools, we deliver Preliminary Planning baseline costs, i.e., Preliminary Baseline Cost Estimate (PBCE) and Adjusted Baseline Cost Estimate (ABCE); clearly and concisely documented MEO costs, i.e., Agency Cost Estimate (ACE) (formerly the In-House Cost Estimate (IHCE)). We also support independent government estimate (IGE) development effort, if requested, for cost realism during source selection.
MEO Independent Reviews:
Our seasoned analysts perform a top to bottom review of completed Agency Tenders to assess compliance with applicable guidance; appropriateness of assumptions; and thoroughness, completeness, and correctness of the costing methodology. All A-76 documents are reviewed (PWS, MEO, PIP, QCP, and ACE) as well as all supporting documents and the COMPARE data. Identification and correction of errors reduces the chance of protests/contests and strengthens the government's position in the event of a protest.
Post Competition Accountability Reviews:
Post Competition Accountability Reviews (PCARs) are performed to determine if the MEO is operating within the requirements of the PWS and their cost proposal. Abacus Technology’s analysts will verify MEO implementation against the PIP, actual performance against PWS quality standards, and using generally accepted auditing principles and Office of Management and Budget (OMB) guidance, the costs of MEO performance will be compared to the estimated cost of Agency performance put forth during the competition. As with Independent Reviews, our in-the-trenches experience building PWS and MEO aids in our ability to review others.
- Strategic Planning and Sourcing
- Acquisition/Source Selection
- Surveys/Focus Groups
- Indexing of Products/Services
- Labor Market Analysis
- Public Affairs/Media Relations
Abacus Technology's Activity Based Costing/Management (ABC/M) solutions range from initial key process identification and analysis to enterprise-wide strategic planning and identification of improvement opportunities through the actual implementation of custom developed solutions for specific improvement initiatives. Our ABC/M services focus on measuring the full cost and performance of key activities. Our professional staff consists of a core group of seasoned professionals, trained and certified in Activity Based Costing/Management, with hands-on experience in providing ABC/M services as well as other process improvement services to a wide range of government organizations. As a result, we provide practical, value-added ABC/M consulting services, that best fit the needs of each individual.
In summary, our ABC/M professionals can:
- Improve the effectiveness and efficiency of an organization's business processes
- Improve specific operations by managing activities that incur costs
- Make effective decisions on product lines, market segments, and customer relationships
- Measure performance, efficiency, quality, and profitability
- Increase the value received from consuming goods or services
- Determine the real and correct costs in your organization
Abacus Technology recognizes the importance of ABC/M in today's competitive business market. Therefore, we have included several links to additional ABC/M resources below, from Government Executive Magazine:
Abacus Technology has courses in many disciplines, including:
- Business Process Reengineering (BPR)/- Lean Six Sigma (LSS)
- Competitive Sourcing
These courses are designed to be quickly tailored to meet the needs of any Agency. The core curriculum includes all the requisite information, and forms the basis for Agency-specific requirements which are added as required. The courses can be quickly updated to include regulatory and policy guidance specific to any Agency.
We pride ourselves on being flexible enough to teach the most useful information to your organization in the minimum amount of time. We can do this because our instructors are in-the-trenches workers who truly understand the subject matter. This real-world experience allows them to not only be flexible, but to bring actual situations to the classroom to enhance understanding.
We have found one of the most well-received sections of any class is the question and answer period, where students are encouraged to ask questions specific to their circumstances. Therefore, we allow ample time for Q&As, without taking unnecessary time from the formal instruction. Our seasoned instructors are the reason we excel – we are able to answer questions with the authority that only comes with hands-on experience.