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New Acquisition Management System Earns Orr award

U. S. Army Corps of Engineers, Omaha District
Published Feb. 3, 2015
Colonel John G. Buck, Commander, Seattle District presents a Commanders Award to Michael C. Orr, Deputy Chief, Omaha District Contracting following his temporary duty to the Seattle District office in 2014. (Photo courtesy of Seattle District Corps of Engineers)

Colonel John G. Buck, Commander, Seattle District presents a Commanders Award to Michael C. Orr, Deputy Chief, Omaha District Contracting following his temporary duty to the Seattle District office in 2014. (Photo courtesy of Seattle District Corps of Engineers)

Michael C. Orr, Deputy Chief, Omaha District Contracting receives the Crystal Rock the Castle award from Mr. Stuart Hazlett, Directorate of Contracting  at USACE Headquarters in Washington, D. C. (Photo courtesy of U. S. Army Corps of Engineers)

Michael C. Orr, Deputy Chief, Omaha District Contracting receives the Crystal Rock the Castle award from Mr. Stuart Hazlett, Directorate of Contracting at USACE Headquarters in Washington, D. C. (Photo courtesy of U. S. Army Corps of Engineers)

He received a huge tribute before superiors and peers, and accomplished something wholly significant that will have deep impacts for some time. 
But Mike Orr, winner of the “ROCK THE CASTLE AWARD,” emphasizes the collaboration between himself and a co-worker rather than take all the credit.

The award, presented by USACE Headquarters, recognizes excellence in contracting. Orr, Deputy Chief of Contracting for the Omaha District, says he’s pleased to receive the award, but he said development of the new Corps acquisition management process, recently implemented in the Omaha District, involved a huge assist from Robert Perkins. “He is a most computer savvy sort who helped make it smarter, more effective and cost effective,” said Orr. Various teams also provided input and assistance, he said.
The award recognizes Orr for “distinguishing himself by continually providing excellent business decisions, resolve, commitment to saving taxpayer dollars and ensuring that USACE mission is met.

Orr led multiple cross functional teams from across the Omaha District that developed a low cost innovative solution that he titled the Contracting Acquisition Management (CAM) system.
The CAM system tracks the acquisition, contracting and production processes of a project. The system uses the hub and spoke concept, with the hub the primary data source from which all other applications (spokes) are driven. CAM houses all contract actions by fiscal year in one consolidated system and provides real-time analysis of the entire contract workload.

CAM allows each contract action to be tracked by product line, size standard, Contract Specialist, Contracting Officer, Program and/or Project Manager. It is an Oracle-based application with a web-based user interface.
Action initiation in CAM begins with the Project Manager and becomes the basis for current and projected requirements, otherwise known as the Overall Acquisition Strategy (OAS).
Below are a few of the “spokes” of CAM:

•Project Acquisition Strategy Board: This board process facilitates and increases project related information communication between Omaha District divisions to ensure all resource possibilities/capabilities are reviewed and sought out before reviewing and posting a contractual action.

•District Acquisition Strategy Board: This board is a committee chaired by the District Commander and comprised of the Corporate Board. The board reviews all new ID/IQ and 8(a) requirements against existing contract vehicles to prevent needless expenditure of resources and allows the district to make strategic decisions related to the future fiscal year needs.

•Compliance Review: A built-in contract compliance checklist is available for selection within the action itself in CAM. This allows the Business Oversight Board (BOB) to develop training based on the findings from these checklists.

•Business Clearance Coordination Record: The BCCR was developed by the Omaha District BOB to document the coordination and review of all actions greater equal to $500K, requiring Contracting Officer, Office of Counsel and BOB review. The Contracting Officer cannot process the award until final business clearance has been granted by the BOB Procurement Analyst or BOB Chief.

•Post Award Review: A Monthly Contract/Modification review provides a real time snapshot of current acquisition trends and findings. It allows the reviewer to select random contract vehicles and measure their compliance with applicable laws, rules and regulations.
CAM enhances contracting quality and outputs:

•Time/Cost Savings: Deficiencies identified during the course of a BCCR and Compliance Reviews are addressed before release of a contractual action resulting in compliant contract documents. Review and remedy present a time cost savings by reducing future administrative contract amendments and modifications. The BCCR and CAM enable the Omaha District to provide a more accurate representation of overall chargeability.

• CAM allows the tracking and monitoring of total acquisition lifecycle. It tracks different types of actions and their projects cradle to grave.

•PALT/CT Costs: Specific data elements enable the contracting division to determine how long it takes and the true cost for the different types of procurement actions.

•Customer Satisfaction: Each action marked awarded in CAM generates an e-mail to the Program and/or Project Manager prompting them to participate in a customer survey. This allows contracting to receive feedback and in-turn improves the overall process.
Upon reviewing CAM, the Corps’ Directorate of Contracting, Program Evaluation Division, working with Army Contracting Command, tasked Orr with designing and developing an enterprise wide version of CAM for full USACE deployment.

Working with Corps headquarters, Orr tackled one of the U.S. Army’s biggest challenges in regards to Contracting oversight. According to John Jacobsen, Omaha District Chief of Contracting, who nominated Orr for the Award, Orr also labored tirelessly as he created a pilot USACE Prospect Oversight Course.

USACE has since adopted it as a mandatory course for all business oversight contracting professionals. “His involvement and contributions made this course a resounding success,” said Jacobsen.
CAM was implemented in the Omaha, Seattle and Portland Districts.

Complete Northwestern Division deployment began a few days ago. Orr, who just before release of this story received a Commanders Award for Civilian Service, was cited for exceptional service as Acting Chief of Contracting Division for the Seattle District during a 120-day stint ending last November.