Innovation in Contracting


As professional business advisors for the Department of Defense (DoD), contracting officers should be aware of the available flexibilities and developments in statute, policy, and regulations that enable the contracting community to quickly, efficiently, and cost effectively procure innovative products and services that meet the rapidly evolving needs of the Warfighter. Accordingly, this page provides a brief synopsis of current initiatives and authorities. The purpose here is to inform, facilitate, and support.

Innovation through Contracting

Better Buying Power is the implementation of best practices to strengthen the Department's buying power, improve industry productivity, and provide an affordable, value-added military capability to the Warfighter. Contracting officers can make contributions in acquiring innovative technologies for the warfighter by leveraging authorities that will help the Department meet the goals it established in the Better Buying Power 3.0 initiative. Below are select acquisition authorities that may be used to acquire innovative technologies.

    FAR-based Pilot Program Authorities

      Streamlining Awards (Pending)

        Provides certain exceptions for contracts awarded to small business or nontraditional defense contractors pursuant to technical, merit-based selection procedures (e.g., broad agency announcement) or the Small Business Innovation Research Program.

      Guidance on Commercial Item Determinations and Determination of Price Reasonableness for Commercial Items (Pending)

        Provides guidance for making price reasonableness determinations, promotes consistency in making commercial item determinations, and expands opportunities for nontraditional defense contractors to do business with DoD.

    Non-FAR Acquisition Authorities

      Other Transactions Agreements for Experimental Purposes (10 U.S.C. 2373)

        Allows buying of ordnance, signal, chemical activity, transportation, energy, medical, space-flight, and aeronautical supplies, including parts and accessories, and designs thereof, that are necessary for experimental or test purposes in the development of the best supplies that are needed for the national defense.

    Under Development

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