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Project on Government Oversight

Appendix A (POGO Report: Bad Business: Billions of Taxpayer Dollars Wasted on Hiring Contractors)

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September 13, 2011

Methodology

Based on the current public debate involving the salary comparisons of federal government and private sector employees, POGO decided to take on the task of doing what others have not—comparing full occupational compensation for the federal government and private sectors with contractor billing rates in order to determine if the current level of service contracting is in the public’s interest.

Selection of Occupations in Sample

POGO reviewed Federal Activities Inventory Reform Act (FAIR Act) inventories to ascertain functions designated as commercial and therefore appropriate for outsourcing. In addition, we reviewed many job classifications that were the subject of FAIR Act challenges and appeals by federal employees—those challenges concerned functions that were considered inherently governmental but were changed to commercial. POGO also reviewed Office of Management and Budget (OMB) analyses of outsourced functions,[1] and analyzed numerous commercial services that are the subject of General Services Administration (GSA) contracts.[2] POGO’s review included comparing job functions with the Office of Federal Procurement Policy’s (OFPP) Proposed Policy Letter. The Proposed Policy Letter is being finalized and will clarify the types of work that can or cannot be outsourced to contractors by setting standards for agencies to designate work as inherently governmental, closely associated with inherently governmental, or critical.[3] This method of selection resulted in 35 occupational classifications covering over 500 service activities. (Appendices B, C, and D)

Classification Systems of Occupations

The categories of services POGO analyzed only include occupations that allowed us to review the costs incurred by the government, contractors, and private sector employers, and that are commonly outsourced. (Appendix B) For each selected occupational title, POGO determined the relevant occupational classification in the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) General Schedule (GS) and Job Grading Standards for Trades, Craft, and Labor Positions (WG) series (which we refer to throughout this Methodology and the report as GS series), Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system, and GSA’s service activities as classified in its Special Item Number (SIN) system.

The OPM GS series is designed to provide a method for organizing occupational and job functions. Occupational groups are defined by a GS series code, which identifies the nature of the work performed by federal employees, the occupational and educational background required, the level of complexity required for employment at various grade levels, and the salaries to be paid to employees who occupy various grade levels.[4] The OPM GS system classifies federal employees into approximately 335 detailed civilian occupational positions. Military occupations are not included in the OPM system, and were not included in POGO’s analysis. POGO excluded military occupations because of the complexity of matching those job functions to job functions performed by civilian federal, contractor, and private sector employees.

BLS’s SOC codes are used to classify private sector employees into occupational categories and to collect, calculate, or disseminate data.[5] Employees are currently classified into over 800 detailed occupations according to their occupational definition.[6] POGO grouped SOCs with similar job duties, and in some cases similar skills, education, or training, in order to compare them with comparable federal government (GS series classifications) and contractor (GSA SINs) employees. Appendix C lists the occupational classification titles used by BLS in the National Compensation Survey (NCS) and Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey—the government’s leading employment and wage databases.

The NCS is a BLS survey of employee salaries, wages, and benefits, and is designed to produce data at local levels, within broad regions, and nationwide. The NCS survey does not include federal government or military-specific occupations. The OES survey is a semiannual mail survey measuring occupational employment and wage rates for wage and salary workers in non-farm establishments in the United States. The OES survey includes state government, local government, the U.S. Postal Service, and federal government agencies. The NCS and OES surveys categorize employees into over 800 detailed occupations.[7] Although military occupations are excluded from the OES survey, government employment data is included. As a result, the NCS survey presents a more accurate picture of private sector compensation than does the OES survey.

GSA’s SIN classification system categorizes job functions for which pre-approved contractors provide billing rates to perform those services.[8] POGO’s investigation focused on SINs for services such as accounting, financial analysis, information technology, nursing, and security and law enforcement services. Multiple SINs may address the services performed by a federal employee classified in a specific OPM GS series. For example, OPM’s GS-610 classification criteria covers all registered nurses in the federal government, but there are three SINs (621-025, 621-053, 621-054) listing similar work. To ensure compatibility, POGO did not include SINs for short-term, temporary services, although government agencies might seek services from the Schedules for a very limited period of time. Where feasible, POGO only selected contracts with private enterprises that were “other than small businesses” to better approximate comparability with the government and private sector data that POGO sampled.

Calculating Federal Employee Compensation

POGO determined the average annual salary for federal government civilian employees performing the occupations analyzed in this report using 2009 data from FedScope, an OPM dataset of federal salary information for all federal employees.[9 ] These salaries are presented in Appendix B as “Base Salary” under the “Federal” column.

FedScope data are not adjusted to reflect overtime pay, leave without pay, or other considerations affecting actual salaries. Because the private contractor billing rates published by GSA include not only salaries but also other costs including benefits contractors provide their employees, POGO added OPM’s 36.25 percent benefit rate to federal employee salaries to reflect the full fringe benefit package paid to federal employees.[10] The federal employee benefit rate is comprised of the following benefits: (1)life and health insurance, (2) standard civilian retirement, (3) Medicare, and (4) miscellaneous fringe benefits, which were not defined.[11] The average full annual compensation paid to federal employees for each of the job classifications is presented in Appendix B as “Base Salary Plus Benefits” under the “Federal” column.

POGO is aware that its methodology does not incorporate some cost factors; i.e., non-directly associated overhead (e.g., executive management and oversight, information technology, and legal support), material and supplies (e.g., insurance and maintenance), or facilities (e.g., depreciation, rent, insurance, maintenance and repair, utilities, capital improvements).[12] However, given the fact that POGO relied exclusively on listed contractor billing rates for performance at government sites, many of those cost factors would essentially be canceled out.[13] In fact, when contractors perform work at contractor sites, contractor billing rates were, on average, 15 percent higher than rates for work performed on government sites. In addition, POGO did not include in its comparative analysis additional costs that the government incurs as a result of outsourcing services to contractors. Those costs would only add to the costs associated with outsourcing documented in this report.

The salaries found in FedScope may, however, overstate federal salaries for purposes of our analysis. First, fedreal employees are, on average, older, more experienced, more tenured, and more educated than the private sector workforce.[14] The salaries in FedScope are therefore generally higher than BLS private sector salary data, which might explain a portion of the differential that POGO found in the comparison of federal with private sector employees.

Second, the FedScope data include only the salaries paid to the current federal employee workforce. The use of this data creates another problem because we were thus comparing the average salary for an incumbent federal employee workforce with that for a prospective contractor workforce. For purposes of gauging the relative cost of hiring federal employees or contractor employees to perform government work, it would have been more accurate to have compared prospective costs for both workforces. POGO’s survey data show federal salaries at the mid-point of OPM’s GS for each federal job, although few federal employees are hired at this level. Most prospective federal employees are hired at the entry-level Step (Step 1) of the relevant GS grade. As a result, the costs associated with outsourcing these jobs to contractors may be even greater than stated.

Third, the federal government imposes regulatory restrictions on its workforce that a contractor workforce may not be required to meet, even when performing the same kind of work. These requirements range from allowing only those who have attained certain GS levels to perform certain kinds of work, to imposing certain academic degree requirements on those who perform specified occupational functions. These requirements are found throughout the federal government and are reflected in the FedScope data, but may not be accounted for in contractor billing rates and private sector total compensation.

Calculating Private Sector Employee Compensation

POGO determined the average annual salary for private sector employees performing the jobs analyzed in this report by using BLS’s NCS.[15] BLS estimates are based on statistically reliable survey samples.[16] The average annual salary for each occupation in the study is presented in Appendix B as “Base Salary” under the “BLS – NCS” column.[17] The BLS salaries reflect base pay but not overtime pay and thus do not reflect actual income. Therefore, POGO added BLS’s 33.5 percent loading to reflect the full fringe benefit package paid to all full-time employees in service-providing organizations that employed at least 500 workers.[18] The BLS load factor included the following five benefits: (1) paid leave, (2) supplemental pay, (3) insurance, (4) retirement and savings, and (5) legally required benefits, which were not specified.[19] This average total compensation paid to private sector employees for each of the job classifications is presented in Appendix B as “Base Salary Plus Benefits” under the “BLS – NCS” column.

BLS also publishes the OES National Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates each year.[20] Because that data includes federal employees, POGO chose to rely on the NCS data, where possible, instead.[21] However, we have included BLS’s OES data to facilitate a complete presentation of relevant data. The OES data was subjected to the same handling as the NCS data to establish comparable annual salaries, and POGO added the 33.5 percent benefit loading to calculate comparable total compensation figures. This average total compensation is presented in Appendix B as “Base Salary Plus Benefits” under the “BLS – OES” column.

There were a number of instances in which more than one private sector occupation met the same criteria as one specific federal employee occupational classification. In those cases, POGO averaged the salaries of the private sector occupations in order to effectively compare the average annual salaries of private sector employees with the average annual salaries of federal employees performing the similar functions. Those federal occupational classifications and private sector occupations are:

OPM GS Series 2210 – Information Technology Management

This series covers two-grade interval administrative positions that manage, supervise, lead, administer, develop, deliver, and support information technology (IT) systems and services. This series covers only those positions for which the paramount requirement is knowledge of IT principles, concepts, and methods such as data storage, software applications, and networking. This series covers, but is not limited to, the following private sector occupations:

 

 

SOC Code

SOC Title

NCS rates

OES rates

15-1099

Computer specialists

— 

$78,010

15-1021

Computer programmers

 $73,217

 $74,690

15-1031

Computer software engineers, applications

$90,728

$90,170

15-1032

Computer software engineers, systems software

$96,160

$96,620

15-1051

Computer systems analysts

 $80,997

 $80,430

15-1061

Database administrators

 $77,423

 $74,290

15-1071

Network and computer systems administrators

 $76,018

 $70,930

15-1081

Network systems and data communications analysts

 $73,286

 $76,560

11-3021

Computer and information systems managers

 $120,221

 $120,640

 

Average rates

$86,006

$84,704

 

 

OPM GS Series 0201 – Human Resources Management

This series covers two-grade interval administrative positions that manage, supervise, administer, advise on, or deliver human resources management products or services. This series covers, but is not limited to, the following private sector occupations:

 

SOC Code

SOC Title

NCS rates

OES rates

11-3049

Human resources managers, all other

$97,560

$105,510

11-3041

Compensation and benefits managers

$93,741

$95,230

11-3042

Training and development managers

$96,251

$94,360

13-1071

Employment, recruitment, and placement specialists

$54,330

$54,530

13-1072

Compensation, benefits, and job analysis specialists

$60,555

$58,520

13-1073

Training and development specialists

$62,738

$55,310

13-1079

Human resources, training, and labor relations specialists, all other

$61,608

$59,070

 

Average rates

$75,255

$74,647

 

 

OPM GS Series 0560 – Budget Analysis

This series covers positions that perform, advise on, or supervise work in any of the phases of budget administration when such work requires knowledge and skill in applying budget-related laws, regulations, policies, precedents, methods, and techniques. This series covers, but is not limited to, the following private sector occupations:

SOC Code

SOC Title

NCS rates

OES rates

13-2031

Budget analysts

$77,539

$69,240

11-3031

Financial managers

$108,978

$113,730

 

Average rates

$93,259

$91,485

         

 

OPM GS Series 1102 – Contracting

This series includes positions that manage, supervise, perform, or develop policies and procedures for professional work involving the procurement of supplies, services, construction, or research and development using formal advertising or negotiation procedures; the evaluation of contract price proposals; and the administration or termination and close out of contracts. The work requires knowledge of the legislation, regulations, and methods used in contracting; and knowledge of business and industry practices, sources of supply, cost factors, and requirements characteristics. This series covers, but is not limited to, the following private sector occupations:

SOC Code

SOC Title

NCS rates

OES rates

13-1023

Purchasing agents, except wholesale, retail, and farm products

$65,066

$58,550

11-3061

Purchasing managers

$108,111

$96,910

 

Average rates

$86,589

$77,730

Calculating Contractor Billing Rates

POGO determined the average annual contractor billing rates for each of the jobs analyzed in this report by averaging the hourly rates found in individual contracts listed in GSA Advantage and multiplying those rates by 2,080 hours, the national standard for full-time employees.[22] The specific contracts, job titles, and rates POGO used in this study are presented in Appendix D.[23] The average annual contractor billing rates for the analyzed occupations are presented in the right-most column in Appendix B.[24] All data presented in Appendix B are for 2009, in order to ensure valid comparisons.[25]

There are often hundreds, in some cases even thousands, of contractors that have their billable rates approved by GSA and that then supply services to the government under a particular SIN. POGO selected a sample of related GSA contracts and their hourly rates in order to calculate the average hourly and annual contractor billing rates. POGO first utilized GSA’s Schedule Sales Query to determine which contracts, other than small business contracts, generated the most sales.[26] We then  selected as many as eight contracts to be analyzed,[27] which provides a sampling of contractor billing rates.[28]

The billing rates listed by GSA include employee compensation (actual salary plus whatever benefit costs are incurred by the contractor), overhead, general administrative expenses, and profits; thus, POGO did not add any additional loading to the contractors’ GSA rates. GSA does not provide a breakdown of what portion, if any, of the rates charged by contractors are allocated to cover the different cost elements, including employee salaries, benefits, overhead, and profit. That information is generally labeled “proprietary” and therefore is unavailable to the public. The contractor billing rates listed by GSA and used by POGO were for work performed at a government site, thus eliminating some contractor overhead costs. Billing rates for work conducted at contractor-owned or -operated sites were approximately 15 percent higher than for work conducted by the contractor employees at a government location. For example, the onsite hourly labor rate for “Engineering – L1” (SIN 871-1) is $140.77, while the contractor-site hourly rate is $166.70, according to one GSA contract.[29]

Management of Potential Errors in Data Comparisons

POGO made every effort to match the occupations, and at times the type of work, in OPM’s, BLS’s, and GSA’s classification systems. This task was challenging because the federal government does not design those systems to facilitate comparative data analyses of the costs of hiring federal employees and outsourcing work to private contractors. The government’s failure to adopt a universal standard for occupational classifications introduces into any comparative study a level of statistical uncertainty that cannot be measured.

To match up like occupations, POGO used occupational titles as well as the corresponding descriptions to ensure that the data for comparable federal, private, and contractor services were analyzed. (See Appendix C for descriptions.) Where possible, POGO included various SOC or GSA contractor job positions to minimize any discrepancy created by the absence of universal standards. For example, when matching OPM’s classification series for Information Technology Management (GS-2210), it was necessary for POGO to include SOC codes 15-1099 (computer specialists), 15-1021 (computer programmers), 15-1031 (computer software engineers, applications), 15-1032 (computer software engineers, systems software), 15-1051 (computer systems analysts), 15-1061 (database administrators), 15-1071 (network and computer systems administrators), 15-1081 (network systems and data communications analysts), and 11-3021 (computer and information systems managers).

Determining how much the government could be billed for services also presented numerous challenges. First, there is no single standard for specifying or identifying either the job or occupational title that federal agencies employ when awarding service contracts.[30] Instead, the government uses generic service codes.[31] Second, generally speaking, the rates contractors actually billed the government (rather than the “ceiling” rates listed by GSA) are not publicly available. In the absence of actual billing rate data, the GSA eLibrary offered the best glimpse at service contractor billing rates because it provides competing billing rates, is publicly available, and is widely used by government agencies. The GSA data allowed POGO to compare compensation paid to federal and private sector employees, with the compensation rates billed for contractor employees. Unfortunately, GSA’s Schedules only account for a small portion of federal funding to contractors that supply goods and services to the government—for instance, GSA’s Schedules only accounted for approximately 7 percent ($37.5 billion out of $541 billion) of contract award dollars in FY 2009.[32]

The absence of universal federal job or occupation standards introduced another challenge for POGO when it came to matching GSA SIN codes to the OPM and BLS occupational classifications. In a number of instances, we were unable to identify any GSA contracts that identified job positions which incorporated functions or activities similar to OPM and BLS occupational titles. Consequently, some occupations were excluded from POGO’s study. For example, POGO had initially selected the GS-105 series (social insurance administration), the GS-991 series (workers’ compensation claims examining), and the GS-996 series (veteran claims examining), but we could not find corresponding GSA SINs and so could not include them in the analysis.

Because OPM’s federal employee salary data, as published on the FedScope website, constitute an overall average for all civilian federal employees classified within a particular GS series, POGO calculated an average of sampled contractor employee billing rates over all the job positions that matched with the appropriate GS series.

This presents, however, additional factors that potentially limit the accuracy of POGO’s findings. There are three relevant factors for generating variances that cannot be accounted for when calculating average contractor rates. First, prospective contractor billing rates vary between contracts, but the government does not provide sufficient data on the cost of actual orders placed on each GSA Schedule.[33] Second, prospective contractor billing rates for any given contract vary according to the specific occupational position authorized in the contact, but the government does not publish information on the number of actual contractor employees holding a specific occupational position under any given contract.[34] Third, the rates used by POGO reflect the ceiling prices that the government can be charged—the government is at liberty to negotiate prices that are lower than those listed, but it does not publish those negotiated rates. As a consequence, POGO’s use of averages is unable to capture the actual distribution of utilized contractor rates.


[ 1]Office of Management and Budget, “Report on Competitive Sourcing Results: Fiscal Year 2007,” May 2008, pp . 6-7.  (Downloaded April 5, 2011)

[ 2] General Services Administration, “GSA eLibrary: Category Guide.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011) (hereinafter “GSA eLibrary: Category Guide”)

[ 3] Federal Register, Vol. 75, No. 61, March 31, 2010, pp. 16188, 16189.  (Downloaded September 27, 2010)

[ 4] Office of Personnel Management, “Federal Classification and Job Grading Systems: Position Classification Standards for White Collar Work.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011); Office of Personnel Management, “Functional Guides.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 5] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Standard Occupational Classification: 2010 SOC Major Groups.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011); Bureau of Labor Statistics, “2010 SOC Definitions.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 6] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “2010 SOC User Guide,” pp. ii, xxiii.  (Downloaded March 8, 2011) (hereinafter SOC User Guide)

[ 7] SOC User Guide, p. xxiii.

[ 8] Other federal agencies offer similar interagency contracts for services; however, GSA offers the most comprehensive access to contractor billing rates.

[ 9] The FedScope website is run by OPM and its salary data are based on the universe of civilian federal employees, not survey samples like BLS uses. The salaries in FedScope are the average basic pay, adjusted for location and other factors. Office of Personnel Management, “FedScope: Employment-June 2009.”  (Downloaded March 28, 2011) (Instructions: select filter at the top for “Occupation – All,” select appropriate category, and then select OPM category/occupation identification number that appears in left column of Appendix B; find filter for “MEASURES” by scrolling all the way to the right, and then select “Average Salary.”)

[ 10] Memorandum from Jim Nussle, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, to the Heads of Executive Departments and Agencies, regarding an Update to Civilian Position Full Fringe Benefit Cost Factor, Federal Pay Raise Assumptions, and Inflation Factors used in OMB Circular No. A-76, Performance of Commercial Activities, M-08-13, March 11, 2008, p. 2.  (Downloaded September 27, 2010) (hereinafter Jim Nussle Memorandum)

[ 11] Jim Nussle Memorandum, p. 2.

[ 12] OMB Circular A-76 outlines numerous costs, including a 12 percent overhead rate, that must be added to full compensation labor costs in order to accurately compare the total cost to the government when making public/private cost comparisons. OMB Circular A-76, Revised May 2003, B-17. (Downloaded September 27, 2010); Center for Strategic & International Studies, “DoD Workforce Cost Realism Assessment,” May 2011. (Downloaded May 20, 2011)

[ 13] In one example within the Defense Finance Accounting Service, the DoD Inspector General stated that it “found no relationship or any instances where general and administrative costs would be reduced by the conversion of work from in-house to contract performance.” Department of Defense Office of the Inspector General, “Infrastructure and Environment: Public/Private Competition for the Defense Finance and Accounting Service Military Retired and Annuitant Pay Functions,” D-2003-05621, March 21, 2003 pp. 19, 22.  (Downloaded May 19, 2011)

[ 14] Office of Management and Budget, Blog Posted by Peter Orszag, “Salary Statistics,” March 10, 2010.  (Downloaded September 27, 2010) (hereinafter Peter Orszag Blog)

[ 15] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Table 31: Private industry establishments with 100 workers or more – Mean and median hourly, weekly, and annual earnings and mean weekly and annual hours by occupation for full-time workers (average reference date July 2009),” June 2010.  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 16] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “National Compensation Survey: Survey Methodology.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 17] Some occupations are listed in the NCS data showing mean hours of less than 2,080 per year, the hourly standard for full-time work. For these occupations, the following calculation was used: (mean annual earnings / mean annual hours) * 2,080. For instance, under the occupation of Claims Adjusters, Examiners, and Investigators (SOC Code 13-1031): ($54,968 (mean annual earnings) / 2,018 (mean annual hours)) * 2,080 would give us a new base salary of $56,657.

[ 18] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employer Costs for Employee Compensation: Historical Listing: March 2004 – December 2010,” March 9, 2011, p. 173.  (Downloaded March 28, 2011) Because the vast majority of contract service providers are large corporate entities, POGO thought it appropriate to calculate benefits based on this workforce classification. The current debate is whether federal employees are compensated at a higher rate than workers in the private sector. Based on data published by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), USA Today calculated that the private sector provides its salaried workforce, on average, a $9,882 annual full fringe benefit package, and that the federal government provides its employees, on average, a $40,785 annual full fringe benefit package. Dennis Cauchon, “Federal pay ahead of private industry,” USA Today, March 8, 2010.  (Downloaded March 9, 2011) However, based on an interview POGO conducted with BEA’s chief economist responsible for collecting and analyzing the data utilized by the media outlet, USA Today’s calculation for private sector benefits amounts to approximately a 16 percent loading for private sector employee benefits, some 50 percent less than the loading documented by the BLS data. The correct calculation results in approximately a $19,000 private sector employee benefit package, rather than $9,882. In addition, according to BEA’s chief economist, USA Today’s calculation of the federal government’s benefit package erroneously included a $30 billion set-aside for unfunded liabilities that covers currently retired federal employees. The correct calculation results in an average federal employee benefit package of approximately $25,000, rather than $40,785.

[ 19] Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Employer Costs for Employee Compensation – March 2008,” BLS News, June 11, 2008, p. 3.  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 21] Any exceptions are identified in Table 1 of the report and Appendix B.

[ 22] In cases where contracts supplied different rates by location, the rates for all locations were averaged to establish an annual billing rate. The average rates used for private industry and federal occupations were not broken out by location. Average annual contractor billing rates are typically based on a 2,087-hour conversion method, but for the sake of comparison to total federal compensation, POGO used a 2,080-hour conversion. As a result, POGO multiplied the average hourly contractor rate by 2,080 to calculate the average annual contractor billing rate. Cristina T. Chaplain, Government Accountability Office, to James R. Davey, September 29, 2008, pp. 1-2.; Project On Government Oversight, “Did Government Contractors Get a Payroll Break?,” November 13, 2008.

[ 23] “GSA eLibrary: Category Guide.” Type the relevant SIN identified in Appendix B in “search” and click “go,” click on the “category” code identified with the SIN you selected to search, and click on the icon under “contracts terms and conditions” to the right of the contractor, as identified in Appendix D; search for appropriate hourly rate or price and multiply by 2,080 for the annual contractor billing rate.

[ 24] POGO applied the hourly rates for services provided at a federal site, even where some contracts provide higher rates for work performed at the contractor’s site.

[ 25] There are a few exceptions pertaining to GSA contractor rates that are noted in Appendix D and reflected in the annual billing rates in Appendix B. This is because some GSA contractor rates were not available for 2009, but any difference in rates was inconsequential and therefore those billing rates were compared to the federal and contractor compensation totals for 2009.

[ 26] The Schedule Sales Query (SSQ) provides access to sales reported by GSA Schedule contractors. General Services Administration, “Schedule Sales Query.”  (Downloaded March 25, 2011)

[ 27] The number selected was guided by the breadth and type of responsibilities set forth in OPM’s classification guides for each occupational series being analyzed.

[ 28] If there were no contracts returned in the Schedule Sales Query, we did a search on the SIN and reviewed the contracts returned, starting with the “O” category (Other than small business) to find contracted rates.

[ 29] Computer Sciences Corporation, Contract Number GS-23F-0092K,SIN 871-1, Contract Period February 4, 2000 – February 3, 2015, p. 25.  (Downloaded March 30, 2011)

[ 30] Agencies file annual military and civilian inventories of service contracts for contracts over $25,000. Those inventories are posted by agencies online and provide information relevant to the contract, but that information isn’t integrated with OPM or BLS data. Public Law 110-181, Sec. 807.  (Downloaded March 28, 2011); PublicLaw 111-117, Sec. 743.  (Downloaded March 28, 2011)

[ 31] General Services Administration, “GSA Product/ServiceCode Manual.”  (Downloaded March 8, 2011)

[ 32] Dan Davidson, “GSA schedule sales slump,” Federal Times, May 5, 2010.  (Downloaded March 8, 2011); Office of Management and Budget, “USAspending.gov.”  (Downloaded March 28, 2011)

[ 33] For example, according to POGO’s sampling, “Senior Manager – Accounting” services can be billed to the government at a rate between $109.93 (GS-23F-0043J) and $252.56 (GS-23F-8196H). General Services Administration, Federal Supply Service, Contract No. GS-23F-0043J, T. Curtis & Company, P.C., January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009.  (Downloaded March 9, 2011); General Services Administration, Federal Supply Service, Contract No. GS-23F-8196H, Grant Thornton LLP, January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2009.  (Downloaded March 9, 2011)

[ 34] Rates for services can fall within a range depending on the actual occupational skills sought within a GSA contract. For example, contract GS-23F-0124M has a published rate of $285.86 for a “Director I – Accounting” and a rate of $327.54 for the “Director II – Accounting” position. General Services Administration, Federal Supply Service, Contract No. GS-23F-0124M, Reznick Group, P.C., March 12, 2008 through March 11, 2009.  (Downloaded March 9, 2011)

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