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Conduct Postaward Orientation Where Applicable

Effective relationships between the Postal Service and its suppliers are central to the success of any purchase. The relationship should be a partnership, with each party working together to achieve a mutual goal. A key element in establishing this relationship is conducting a postaward orientation, which brings the selected Supplier face to face with the Purchase/SCM Team to further clarify project requirements and objectives, introduce the Supplier to the Postal Service's project team, and provide a forum for resolution of possible issues or misunderstandings before project kickoff.

Selecting Contracts for Postaward Orientation

The Purchase/SCM Team may decide that a postaward orientation is needed. The extent of the postaward orientation depends on several factors, including:

The nature and extent of the preaward survey and any other prior discussions with the Supplier

Contract type, value, and complexity

Item purchase history

Requirements for spare parts and related equipment

Urgency of the delivery schedule and relationship of the supplies or services to critical programs

Extent of subcontracting, including small business and diversity opportunities

Supplier's past performance and experience

Length of period of performance

Safety precautions required for hazardous materials or operations

Complex financing arrangements (e.g., progress payments, advance payments)

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Postaward Orientation Arrangements

Postaward orientations should be held promptly after a contract is awarded. The Contracting Officer should:

Establish the time and place for the orientation

Prepare the agenda

Notify appropriate Purchase/SCM Team members

Act as the chairperson

Prepare a postaward orientation report

Postaward Orientation Procedures

The Contracting Officer acts as the chairperson of the orientation and conducts the proceedings. The Contracting Officer must emphasize that it is not the purpose of the postaward orientation to change the contract. During the contract award orientation, the Contracting Officer will:

Introduce all participants.

Discuss any unusual or significant contract requirements.

Identify and emphasize the role of the Contracting Officer's Representative (COR). Additional information on the COR can be found in the Appoint Contracting Officer's Representatives (CORs) topic of the Plan for Contract Management task of Process Step 3: Select Suppliers.

Identify any items (e.g., security clearances, subcontracting plans) that the Supplier must obtain or provide before beginning work.

Establish a plan for resolving any identified issues that cannot be resolved during the orientation.

At the conclusion of a successful postaward orientation, contract requirements are clarified, misunderstandings have been resolved, and the Postal Service and the Supplier are aware of, and prepared to fulfill, contract requirements. Decisions resulting from postaward orientations may result in a need to modify the contract, and this must be done by contract modification. A contract modification is a written alteration in the specifications, delivery point, rate of delivery, contract period, price, quantity, or other provision of an existing contract. Except for certain mail transportation contracts, only Contracting Officers may sign contract modifications.

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Postaward Orientation Report

The Contracting Officer or his or her designee prepares and signs a postaward orientation report that covers all items discussed, including:

Areas requiring resolution

Controversial matters

Information provided by both parties

Contract deliverables

Names of participants assigned responsibility for further actions and the due dates for the actions

The report should also include the names and titles of all orientation participants. Copies of the report are distributed to the Purchase/SCM Team, the contract management office, the Supplier, and other key stakeholders within the Postal Service who require this information.

Other Topics Considered

Appoint Contracting Officer's Representatives (CORs) topic, Plan for Contract Management task, Process Step 3: Select Suppliers

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