I want to shift gears and talk about something companies, academic institutions and innovation groups should be aware of if they do business or would like to do business with the DoD. I’d like to discuss a non-traditional process that is gaining momentum in recent years. The process called Other Transaction Authority (OTA) has been authorized by Congress since 1994, but was rarely used because the DoD preferred establishing contracts through the System for Award Management (SAM) using Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR). Anyone who has worked a contract with the DoD under this system knows how time consuming and onerous the process can be to land a deal with the government. The frustration over this system has led many businesses and academic institutions to quit attempting to compete for DoD contracts and grants. This has resulted in large industry prime companies enjoying a complete monopoly on government contracts. Over the years, the DoD has recognized it loses out on many innovative new science and technology ideas especially from small businesses. This has directly led military services to utilize OTA agreements with more frequency to gain exposure to new commercial technologies and ideas without the hassle of going through the SAM process. Leaders should familiarize themselves with the OTA process to see if it has potential for their company or group. The sites below should answer many of your initial questions about an OTA and the DoD’s current approach to fielding innovative technology from the business and academic sectors.
In addition, there are numerous websites leaders can review for more information on OTAs and how to engage the defense department and agencies. The Defense Innovation Marketplace is a one-stop shop to determine what the DoD’s requirements are and connect with the appropriate service, agency or research lab. Two Blue Aces is here to help your company, academic institution or innovation group navigate this process and put your team on the right track for business development with the DoD. Give us a call to discuss.