Thursday, April 07, 2005

Note, there is a new white paper regarding management fees for the M&O contract

From Anonymous:

Note, there is a new white paper regarding management fees for the M&O contract that has been posted on the web site:

Note that contractor payments to its parent organization for their expert adivce and management systems would be an allowable cost not requiring a subcontract.

I read it and it looks like a sound business proposal. Every one wins.
Looks like NNSA/DOE is tired of UC's old "hands off" approach to running LANL and is going to force a future operator (be it UC or Lockheed Martin/UT, etc) to actually earn its award/management fee, and it would appear that the lab will take on much more of the "parent" organization's way of doing business. If UC retains the contract, probably not much of a shock to the lab's business systems since UC's corporate culture is to let the campuses/labs run themselves and hold the Chancellors/Directors accountable - "UC is a lose collection of strong willed principalities joined by a common benefits and retirement system - but if LM or some industry type gets the contract, look out as they attempt to put their stamp on all lab operations...

Here at LLNL I've been frustrated for years at how difficulty it is to utilize resources and staff from the other UC Labs (LBNL, LANL) and UC campuses. Once when I need to have a LANL engineer come to LLNL to do some work (5 days worth of auditing our documents and giving me feedback on how she thought our program was compared to a similar one she ran at LANL). I had to go through our procurement department and write a contract (statement of work, project plan with deliverables, cost schedule, etc) just as if I were trying to get someone from Oak Ridge or Y-12 (which I've also done, and yes a real contract is well worth the effort to protect yourself when dealing with them). In a true corporate world model I would just have given her a UC Lab account number and she'd charge her time and travel to it - end of story. Instead I spent a good deal of time and additional money on paperwork and the buyer in procurement, all just to borrow another UC employee for a week - probably doubled the cost to me (and ultimately the taxpayers).

Also, the NNSA selection board is writing this RFP so conceptually different from existing M&O contracts the DOE complex, you really can't look at Lockheed Martin's approach to Sandia Lab as any indication of what life would be like under a LM regime at LANL.

One question I have is this, will Lockheed Martin dissolve (remake?) Sandia Corporation and create a new corporation to run both Sandia and Los Alamos Labs. If UT is involved in both Labs, as LM's partner, this would seem to make sense.
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