Federal Acquisition Regulations Ombuds (FAR)
Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Section 16.505, “Ordering,” requires that the head of the agency shall designate a task-order and delivery-order ombuds. The ombuds must review complaints from contractors, and ensure they are afforded a fair opportunity to be considered, consistent with the procedures in the contract. The ombuds must be a senior agency official who is independent of the contracting officer and may be the agency’s competition advocate.
NASA’s provides an example of how to implement their FAR Ombuds program in Subpart 1815.70—“Ombudsman” of their procurement procedures. They require that all synopses announcing competitive acquisitions and each contract and task order contain substantially the same clause found in Subpart 1852.215-84.
All federal programs, even a federal Ombuds program, create records needed to document activities for which they are responsible and to demonstrate the effectiveness of the program. The National Archives and Records Administration’s (NARA), General Records Schedule 1, Civilian Personnel Records, Section 27, Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) files contain general guidance on ARD record retention.
Ombuds should consult with their agency records officer and legal counsel when developing their record retention policy, and ensure any records retention procedures do not conflict with Ombuds confidentiality requirements.
Frequently Asked Questions