Contract Specialist
Legislative Branch - Washington, DC

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The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) supports the Congress in meeting its constitutional responsibilities to legislate, appropriate, and oversee the Federal government for the benefit of the American people. The GAO, commonly referred to as the investigative arm of Congress, or the congressional watchdog, is independent and nonpartisan. The GAO assists Congress in making informed decisions by providing information on policy and program issues, as well as by providing recommendations to make government more effective and responsive.

GAO's work is designed to address four common goals:

- to help the Congress address current and emerging challenges to the well-being and financial security of the American people;

- to help the Congress to respond to changing security threats and the challenges of global interdependence;

- to help transform the Federal government to address national challenges; and

- to maximize the value of GAO by enabling quality, timely service to Congress and by being a leading practices Federal agency.

Voted one of the best places to work in the federal government since 2005, we provide flexibilities and benefits to our employees. We promote dynamic and forward-thinking workplace practices. We foster an inclusive work environment that emphasizes continuous learning, personal and professional development, and incentives for exceptional performance. We promote equal opportunity for all staff without regard to age, disability, ethnicity, gender, religion, or sexual orientation. GAO's success in embracing and leveraging the diversity of its employees is central to our mission of serving a diverse American population through its congressional representatives.

If you want to help form public policy, and you have exceptional analytical, communication, and collaboration skills, and can demonstrate high levels of initiative, then GAO is where you want to be!

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This position is located in the Government Accountability Office (GAO), Financial Management and Business Operations (FMBO), Acquisition Management (AM), Procurement Operations Branch (POB). AM is responsible for assisting headquarters and field office staff in obtaining goods and services from industry and other federal agencies. AM is divided into two branches: Procurement Operations and Policy.

AM's Procurement Operations Branch provides support to GAO internal stakeholders and external customers. The Branch provides a full range of acquisitions services from acquisition planning to contract closeout.
  • U.S. Citizenship
  • Completion of a satisfactory background investigation
  • A probationary period will be required.

DUTIES: The incumbent serves as a Contracting Officer with an unlimited warrant and maintains a FAC-C certification.

Serves as a Lead Contract Specialist, planning the overall approach to meet contracting program objectives for procuring a variety of complex Information Technology procurements and other highly specialized requirements.

Serves as the department focal point for a full range of pre-award and post-award contracting activities associated with the acquisition of goods and services, such as acquisition planning, contract negotiation and preparation, administration, and termination, in support of GAO’s mission.

Applies extensive knowledge of various types of contracts, contract methods and selection factors to plan appropriate strategies for complex procurement requirements.

Prepares solicitation and synopsis documents for procurement actions.

Analyzes difficult contracting issues and determines recommended course of action.

Researches applicable regulations and incorporates the required Federal Acquisition Regulation to insure that general provisions are in conformance with statutory requirements and other governmental regulations and policies.

Applies extensive knowledge of contract laws, regulations and procedures applicable to the acquisition and contract administration of supplies and services.

Provides post award administration of contracts, responsible for day-to-day and long-term administration of the contracts.

Continually reviews contractor performance against contract requirements.

Coordinates with technical personnel within the agency, as required, to resolve problems.

Responsible for monitoring performance of prime and subcontractors, and monitors the expenditure of contract funds.

Prepares determination and findings when required to support a contractual action.

Manages workload in automated procurement data systems.

Compose written materials (e.g., emails, memoranda, documents) in a succinct and organized manner.

QUALIFICATIONS REQUIRED: Selective Placement Factors: Must hold FAC-C or DAWIA Level III certification and held a Contracting Warrant.

Applicants must have at least one year (52 weeks) of specialized experience at the next lower level/band, equivalent to the PT-II/GS-13 grade level in the Federal service. Examples of specialized experience is skills in technical and coordination activities sufficient to lead work on a variety of highly complex Information Technology procurements; specialized experience is progressively responsible experience in performing the full range of pre-award and/or post award activities utilizing various types of contracts such as fixed price, various cost types, requirements, performance based and multiple award schedules) and evidence of professional potential, business acumen, and drive for results, relationship building, and self-motivation in order to procure a variety of complex or specialized products and/or services; OR experience requiring sufficient knowledge of contracting regulations, policies, and procedures and an organization's program and technical requirements in order to conduct reviews of contracts or contracting actions, recommend or plan improvements to an organization's procurement program.


Completion of all mandatory training prescribed by the head of the agency for progression to GS-13 (or equivalent) or higher level contracting positions, including at least 4-years experience in contracting or related positions. At least 1 year of that experience must have been specialized experience at the next lower level/band, equivalent to the GS-13 grade level in the Federal service.

Exceptions: Employees in GS-1102 positions will be considered to have met the standard for positions they occupy on January 1, 2000. This also applies to positions at the same grade in the same agency or other agencies if the specialized experience requirements are met. However, they will have to meet the basic requirements and specialized experience requirements in order to qualify for promotion to a higher grade.

Applicants must have a 4-year course of study leading to a bachelor's degree, that included or was supplemented by at least 24 semester hours in any combination of the following fields: accounting, business, finance, law, contracts, purchasing, economics, industrial management, marketing, quantitative methods, or organization and management.

HOW YOU WILL BE EVALUATED: If you meet the qualification requirements stated above, you will be further rated based on your responses to the vacancy questions. Please make sure that your responses to the vacancy questions are supported in your resume. Follow all instructions carefully as incomplete answers, errors, or omissions may affect your rating. Your rating will be invalid if you fail to include a narrative reply to any vacancy question(s) that requires further explanation or your reply is "see resume." Veterans Preference applies to this announcement. For more information regarding veterans preference please visit
To preview questions please click here .

BENEFITS: Individuals selected will be eligible for a full range of federal employment benefits including vacation and sick leave, retirement coverage and Thrift Savings Plan, and health and life insurance. A complete list of benefits is available on the web at .

OTHER INFORMATION: Relocation expenses will not be paid.