This book represents an accumulation of life-long learning experiences that I sometimes reflect upon, and I remind myself that so far, it has been a great journey. There have been so many teachers, mentors, colleagues, and friends along the way who have taught me many lessons. I think that the greatest lesson I have learned is that with time, patience, and perseverance all things are truly possible. The completion of this book is like reaching the top of the mountain and looking back to all the people who helped along the way. I thank all of you so very much.

I would particularly like to thank some folks that played very significant roles in the "mountain climb."

First is Joyce Hamlin, my word processing consultant, who worked many long hours to complete the original version of the material that is now this book. I honestly believe that without her efforts, this book would not have been possible.

There are many people at Management Concepts who had a part in this book and I thank all of them, especially Myra Strauss, the editorial director, for her review and final processing of the manuscript as well as her continuing support.

The Contracting Officer's Representative and Contract Fundamentals

The contracting officer (CO) administers the contract during contract performance, but he or she rarely has the expertise to administer all areas of the contract necessary for successful performance. Therefore, the CO's decisions must be based upon the input of many people. The contracting officer's representative's (COR) responsibility is to provide technical support to the CO and to the contract specialist.

This chapter answers questions about the COR's specific duties, the COR's role in contract administration, and the COR's communication and documentation duties. This book provides answers to important questions about the typical duties and responsibilities of CORs. The actual duties and responsibilities of the COR are set forth in the letter of designation and may differ from those presented in this book. General principles, however, should still apply.

The COR will need to determine the requirements for designation as a COR in his or her particular agency. These COR designation requirements should, at a minimum, identify:

1. The COR training and certification requirements

2. The COR nomination and designation procedures of the contracting officer (i.e., the CO) making the designation

3. The title that will be used for the designated COR position.


What is the COR?

The COR is a non-contracting person who is given the chief role in the technical monitoring and administrative aspects of a statement of work or specification of a contract. FAR 2.101 states: "Contracting Officer's Representative (COR) means an individual, including a contracting officer's technical representative (COTR), designated and authorized in writing by the contracting officer (CO) to perform specific technical or administrative functions."

What other terms do some agencies use in place of "COR"?

Agencies may describe the same official using terms such as:

Contracting officer's technical representative (COTR)

Government technical representative (GTR)

Government technical evaluator (GTE).

Some agencies may reserve the COTR designation for technical representatives, while using the COR label for individuals who have other contract administration duties. Other agencies use the term COR to identify any government person who has been given authority under a contract by the CO. An agency usually handles the issue of deciding which title to use for the individual through a supplement to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) or other policy documents that generally reflect organizational practice. For the purposes of this book, the representative of a CO will always be called a COR.

What terms or roles can be confused with those of the COR?

The terms "ordering officer," "BPA caller," "contracting officer," "POC" (point of contact), "PCO" (principal or procuring contracting officer), "ACO" (administrative contracting officer), and "TCO" (termination contracting officer) have specific and decidedly different meanings and should not be used if the title COR is intended.

An individual may be designated as a COR under one contract and have another role (e.g., ordering officer) under another contract. Care should be taken not to confuse the titles, as the authorities of each position are quite different.

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