JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-FORT SAM HOUSTON, Texas (Aug. 19, 2020) -- Mission and Installation Contracting Command quality assurance specialists and contracting officer representatives enforce the Federal Acquisitions Regulation in support of quality assurance and surveillance actions for government contracts that support the Army warfighter.
Quality assurance specialists, or QASs, are involved in planning, developing and administering quality assurance programs to support the acquisition of services and supplies required by the Army. QASs are primarily concerned with the prevention of defects and non-conformance, the identification of trends and conditions, and the correction of factors that may contribute to defective items.
Through the quality assurance program, MICC contracting officers rely on contracting officer representatives, or CORs, assigned to supported mission partners to conduct oversight to ensure that its quality control programs are effective. Contractors must ensure they carry out their obligations under the contract in terms of quality, timeliness and cost, while the government is responsible for ensuring that services and supplies conform to the contract. The MICC Quality Assurance Program implements procedures, processes and practices to improve the overall effectiveness of contract administration and oversight.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the MICC QAS and COR programs have modified their approach to supporting the mission.
To assist QASs collect inspection data and process non-conformance reports from CORs, Army Contracting Command officials introduced a database for the collection of performance data on contractor performance, COR performance and non-conformance reports tracking for COVID-19 actions performed. Once the data is inputted, QASs can pull pre-made reports for leadership reflecting overall contract performance.
“Most of us are teleworking, but still provide the oversight and mentorship for the CORs,” said Karl Fischer, the quality assurance functional manager for the MICC Procurement Operations Division at Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston, Texas. “For COVID-19 actions at Forts Hood, Bragg and Bliss, I have processed 136 audits with 2,670 observations or inspections with a base compliance rating of 90.03%.”
The two programs complement each other.
Together, MICC QASs and organizational CORs provide a level of contractor oversight to ensure MICC contracted services are within the standards of the contract. This provides readiness to the warfighter guaranteeing them supplies or services that meet their expectations. Certified MICC QAS instructors provide required face-to-face enhanced training to all CORs appointed by a MICC contracting officer on all service and construction contracts.
“We had to revise and adjust our training for a virtual environment when COVID-19 broke,” Fischer said. “Currently, we are delivering some of our classes in this manner. For the CORs to perform to expectations, it is important they receive the best COR training MICC QASs can provide. The better the training, the better the results, the better equipped the CORs are to provide oversight and surveillance of contractors that in turn provide supplies and services to the warfighter, on-time and at cost. Once the COR has been appointed and starts to perform on a contract, the local QAS provides mentorship, instruction and reach back capability.”
The MICC is responsible for administering approximately 7,800 active contracts, and quality assurance specialists and contracting officer representatives are involved in all of them.
About the MICC:
Headquartered at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston, Texas, the Mission and Installation Contracting Command consists of about 1,500 military and civilian members who are responsible for contracting goods and services in support of Soldiers as well as readying trained contracting units for the operating force and contingency environment when called upon. As part of its mission, MICC contracts are vital in feeding more than 200,000 Soldiers every day, providing many daily base operations support services at installations, facilitate training in the preparation of more than 100,000 conventional force members annually, training more than 500,000 students each year, and maintaining more than 14.4 million acres of land and 170,000 structures.
Mission and Installation Contracting Command
Video: MICC mission
Like us on Facebook
Connect with us on LinkedIn
Find more images on Flickr
Video: MICC YouTube