Contracting officers are one of the Pentagon’s greatest resources as the military works to speed up its acquisition process. But one expert says that revamping the marketplace is going to need buy-in from all parties Brent Calhoon, partner at Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, told Government Matters that government auditors and contractors need to work with each other to achieve rapid procurement.
“Contractors are trying to do the right thing. There are always going to be bad actors. We can’t eradicate them, we have to just identify them. But treating everything as if it is a bad actor is probably not the right direction to take. It’s really about stepping out and looking at how we do business. What’s the most reasonable thing to do there? Place everyone in everybody else’s shoes.” Calhoon said. “I know that’s hard to do. Contractors should do the same. Understand the point of view of a contracting officer whose job is to protect the public purse. Contracting officers can put themselves in the contractors’ shoes. They’re trying to conduct business, maintain the workforce, they’re trying to get things done. Sometimes it requires a lot of understanding each other and communication.”