Significant effort is put into the pre-award phases of a procurement process. On the government side, months or even years are spent defining and refining requirements, engaging with industry, and painstakingly selecting a winning contractor. On the industry side, similar investments in time and money are made to understand the government’s requirements and create solutions that provide value and are differentiated enough to win.

During these pre-award phases, there are compliance checks, multiple review cycles, and so much rigor that one would think every government award ends up crystal clear to all parties involved. However, that is far from today’s reality, especially when the team of people who worked the pre-award phases are not the same team of people who work the post-award execution.

It can seem more like gazing into an opaque sphere than a crystal ball. Discrepancies, undocumented assumptions, inadequate level of detail, information held by some stakeholders but not all, and mismatched expectations are examples of circumstances that make successful post-award execution so challenging. To make matters worse, walking into a messy situation as the new responsible party can make you want to shout, “What did I walk into?!” But shouting only helps for a moment and you realize that, in order to do your job, you’ll need a clear mind and a strategy to assess the situation and determine a path forward. You can’t do that alone because government contracting is a team effort with a myriad of stakeholders involved.

The NCMA NEXUS conference brought this entire myriad of stakeholders together to collaborate and learn from each other. Presenters Kimberly Jones, Trinity Hanson, Joseph Endresss, SPC; Lauren Bloomquist; Brendan Sutch, CFCM; and Ami Adams from CGI Federal and Dolores Kuchina-Musina, Ph.D., PPCM, CFCM, CF APMP, NCMA Fellow from Rexota Solutions, LLC focused their efforts at NEXUS on hosting a two-hour workshop to explore the skills and communication methods necessary for a professional new to the team to achieve a clear mind and path forward for successful post-award execution.

This clue-themed workshop, developed and facilitated by CGI, allows teams to put their investigative skills to work, learning how to ask the right questions to solve challenges experienced by Program Managers, Contracting Professionals, Business Development Leads, and everyone else involved in a successful post-award execution. As a team, you will unlock mysteries from the proposal, evaluation, and award negotiation processes that impact award execution. Teams will develop a summary of award changes that better capture intent of the contract to ensure compliance, proper execution, and provide clarity for everyone on the team.

CGI will be hosting another Clued In for Successful Post-award Execution workshop at the NCMA World Congress this July in Seattle, Washington.