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					        Ethics Minute
     September 16, 2009
 Jeff Shen, Programs Chair
Acquisition Management SIG




 Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                                Scenarios

• You’ve recently been let go from your position at your
  company. A good friend of yours from a federal agency
  suggests that you apply for an open position on their team
  providing direct support to your friend. Although he will not
  make the hiring decisions, he provides all of the hiring data
  in regards to how to apply and submit your professional
  credentials to the HR staff in the agency. Given your
  friend’s position and their encouragement of joining their
  agency, what protocol should you follow when deciding
  whether to apply or not (assuming you are very interested)?




              Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                          Answer Options

• (A) Do not apply for the position because it would violate
  procurement integrity with your friend recommending you for
  the position.
• (B) Apply because your friend is not making the hiring
  decisions.
• (C) Apply because your friend is your friend and friends
  should help each other out regardless of their position of
  authority in government.




             Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                    The Correct Answer Is…

• (B) Assuming you are interested in the position, there is
  nothing wrong with having a friend in a federal agency
  encouraging you to apply for an open position on his or her
  team.
• As long as your friend follows proper hiring protocol within
  their agency and abides by ethical hiring practices, there is
  no issue.
• Your friend should not have any undue influence on the
  rating or selecting officials who are making the actual hiring
  decisions or create any unique circumstances to make sure
  you get a preferential review.


              Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                               Scenarios

• A good friend of yours that runs an IT department in a
  federal agency has a large upcoming IT contract for re-
  compete. During a casual conversation, the friend, who is
  not participating in the RFP development or source selection
  review, encourages you to consider bidding for this contract.
  Given this suggestion, you speak with your company on
  potentially bidding this work. They agree to pursue, and you
  begin your capture work. Given the initial dialogue you had
  with your friend within this federal agency, are you
  precluded from bidding?


             Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                                 Scenarios

• (A) Yes because your friend violated procurement integrity
  by discussing a procurement that hasn't yet been released.
• (B) Yes because even though your friend is not overseeing
  or participating in the contract, he is still an official within the
  agency
• (C) Yes because your friend violated procurement integrity
  by encouraging you to bid a contract that is coming out of
  his department
• (D) No because your friend did not violate procurement
  integrity by sharing any source selection information and is
  not involved in the procurement

               Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                   The Correct Answer Is…

• (D) It is a common and acceptable practice for government
  staff to encourage companies to bid upcoming contracts.
  Simply put, it encourages competition which is in the best
  interest for the government and taxpayers.
• Your friend encouraging you to bid would only be
  considered “unethical” if he provided any favorable
  treatment to you during the procurement process, including
  providing any upfront data on the opportunity that is not
  already public.
• Discussing acquisitions prior to RFP release is a common
  and encouraged practice to ensure requirements are
  concrete.

             Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community
                   For More Information

• Review FAR Subpart 3.101 – 3.104, 3.110
• Contact your Ethics Officer or General
  Counsel, or the Office of Government Ethics.
  See: www.usoge.gov
• Review the IAC Ethics Corner on the
  ACT/IAC home page.


          Government and Industry IT: one vision, one community

				
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