DCAA Compliance means you could pass a DCAA Pre-Award Survey, form SF1408. Here's the quick fail test - if you can't calculate indirect rates based on your income statement detail, then you'll fail.
Can you print reports from your accounting system that show your labor hours and costs broken out by contract, overhead, G&A and leave? How do you show that the overhead and G&A percentages you are using to bid are based on your actuals and projected costs.
You've been bidding a wrap rate of 1.7, but could your actual costs be higher? How often do you update your bid rates?
If you don't bid, you can't win, but where do you draw the line? Do you set a B&P budget of 2% - 3% of sales? Do you have a pipeline that is realistic about PWIN? Does your comp plan make everyone just chase deals?
You know how to find opportunities and respond to proposals. You're a successful subcontractor and want to go after your own prime contracts. You have a pipeline and have planned your track for the next 18-36 months. You've found affordable online tools to find opportunities and teammates faster, and your PWIN continues to improve.
You've got a professional looking Capabilities Brochure with your CAGE code, NAICs, D&B, all contact information, and you're using your domain e-mail. You've strong LinkedIn profiles for everyone, and they are all connected to your LinkedIn Company Page and Showcase Pages. Your company Facebook page is all about employees and community service. Your website includes everything on your capability brochure plus more about your products, past performance and clients. It's clear to any Contracting Officer that you are a Federal Contractor. Your GSA schedule and other contract vehicles show up in online searches.
Do you have Pricing strategies that show how the direct labor added from a contract win will drive down your overhead rates and make you more competitive? When you complete the spreadsheets for the cost volume, are you sure that the math is right? Do you know what the competitive range is for your fully burdened labor rates? Can you show your projected indirect rates for 5 years with confidence? When you are going after more complex contracts, do you know how to come up with onsite/offsite overhead rates and material/subcontracts handling?
Billing would be easy if you didn't have so many charge numbers, billing rates, contract values and end rates to track. Are you able to get billings out within 5 days of the end of the billing period? Are you billing in spreadsheets or do you have an automated process? Can you tie your billings back to your timesheets, payroll and accounting system? Do your billings show the current amount billed and the cumulative? Do you have any Cost Plus contracts and have you prepared an Incurred Cost Submission?
Do you have Financial Statement and Project Management reports with reporting available within 7-10 days after the end of the month? Do the hours on timesheets flow into your payroll systems or does someone have to re-key them? Are your program managers keeping their own set of books? Do you understand your Balance Sheet and Profit and Loss well enough to explain to your banker? Do you review budgets vs actually monthly and make sure your indirect rates for fringe, overhead and G&A track to your bid rates?
Do you have an Onboarding Process that makes new employees feel like a part of the team and the customer feel like their needs are being met? Is there a hand-off from proposal to Program Manager that ensures you deliver what you stated in the Technical and Management approach?
Are you using in-house recruiter or outsourcing? Do you have a flat rate or percentage agreement with a placement firm? Do your primes poach your employees once the clearance comes through? Can you present your candidate faster than your competitors? How are you using LinkedIn and Facebook for recruiting? Have you created an intern program to develop your team and qualify for hubzone, etc.?
Are you confident that your handbooks and policies cover all the communications and legal requirements you need? Does your unique company personality show up in all the relationships you have with your team and your community involvement?
Do you have professional contract management staff? Do you have sharepoint or other portals for contract documents, scope of work, contract values and funding and modifications. Do you have your own teaming agreements, consulting agreements and subcontracts? Do you have advisors you can turn to about contracting issues before you involve your attorneys?
Do you have regular Program Management updates? How do you control employee assignments and availability for your contracts? Do your program managers keep their own set of books? Do your Program Managers receive reports of time at least weekly? Who prepares and send CDRLs and Status Reports. Are there review processes for billings and collections?
Do you have written documentation of your DFARs Cyber compliance, a reporting system and testing going on? Do you have Cyber insurance coverage?
Do you have a designated FSO that stays current with rules and administrative changes? Are you concerned about passing any audits of your security clearance processes?
Are you on any of the Best in Class Contracts or do you need to be? Do you know how to market your GSA schedule? Have you considered what it would cost to get onto one of the larger vehicles, and how your investment would pay off? Do you understand the on-ramp and contract rules?
Do you have a Line of Credit or are you still using a factoring company? Have you ever lost a proposal because the KO determined that you didn't have the history to support your indirect rates? If you won an IDIQ but everything is LPTA, how will you make up for the risks on those task orders? Do you understand how risk averse banker can be about financing a company that has no collateral, and a very high Debt to Equity and a pitifully low Current Ratio? How do you explain anomalies like negative Retained Earnings and the low profit margins? Do you know the bankers that truly understand and advocate for federal contractors?
Risk Management in federal contracting ranges from compliance risk, insurance coverage and options and legal counsel. Do you work with specialists in the federal market that are proactive in meeting you needs.
Are there advanced certifications like CMMI, ISO that you need or have? Do you have technical products in R&D stage and what would it take to hit the Technical Readiness Level that you could use to get into innovation programs or be able to access Other Transaction Authority (OTAs) through one of the OTA Consortia (Like NSXTL, TReX.)