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When is a letter of designation used?

A letter of designation is prepared when a CO must administer a contract and needs to rely on other government personnel to ensure the successful completion of the contract. For example, the CO officially designates a COR by issuing a letter of designation based on the CO's acceptance of the technical qualifications of the individual nominated by the program office in the nomination letter.

What are the elements of a letter of designation?

Letters of designation must be tailored for the individual COR for each applicable contract to which a COR is assigned. Therefore, each letter will contain certain elements as necessary. The sample letter provided in Figure 1-1

Sample CQR Letter of Designation

FIGURE 1-1. Sample CQR Letter of Designation

contains several elements that are most often found in a letter; however, it is unlikely that an individual letter would contain all the elements shown. For example, other individuals may be assigned inspection and acceptance or property administration duties. It is essential that the elements in the letter be tailored to the particular individual in a given COR designation because this is the document that establishes the COR's authority as delegated by the CO.

What other means of designation do agencies use to outline the duties of a COR?

Agencies may use other means of designation, such as:

Team assignments. Some agencies have developed a joint partnership agreement that is signed during the preaward phase, defining how the program office and the contracting office will work together on the contract. The agreement contains details pertaining to the duties and areas of responsibility of each party in defining the contract requirements and planning for contract administration during the performance period. The teamwork concept is enhanced by designating the COR early in the process. By becoming familiar with the program requirements, the COR is able to assist the CO in developing the statement of work and contract administration plan.

Contract requirements. The COR's authority and responsibilities can be presented in the contract through:

- Part 1, Section G ("Contract Administration Data") of the Uniform Contract Format, or an addendum to a commercial item contract that specifies the name and duties of the COR

- The technical direction clause in the contract, which establishes the scope of the COR's responsibilities in relation to the contractor. The clause further defines the role of the COR during contract performance.

The CO delegates the authority and responsibilities of the COR by signing the contract. A separate letter may not be necessary when the information contained in the contract is sufficient.

Internal policy. Instructions and responsibilities addressed to individuals involved in the contract administration process may also be contained in:

- Regulations and policy documents

- Job descriptions of contract administration team players.

Regardless of internal policies, the CO must still officially designate the individual who will serve as COR by name under a specific contract. Agency policy, procedures, and job descriptions cannot substitute for a specific designation from the CO, unless the agency has an agreement with the contracting officeas in a situation in which the same commodity or services were being acquired on follow-on contracts, and the COR designation flows from one contract to the next per the conditions of the agreement.

Also, remember that if the assigned duties of the COR are changed, or another person is assigned the responsibility by the program office to technically monitor the contract, the program office or the COR must inform the CO immediately so that the CO may assign the duties of the COR to another person.

In summary, the designation process should follow these steps:

1. The COR is nominated in writing by the program organization.

2. The COR is notified by letter, written and signed by the CO.

3. The COR acknowledges acceptance of the position by signing and returning a copy of the letter to the CO.

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