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NPR 8735.2C
Effective Date: March 12, 2021
Expiration Date: March 12, 2026
Printable Format (PDF)

Subject: Hardware Quality Assurance Program Requirements for Programs and Projects (Updated w/Change 1)

Responsible Office: Office of Safety and Mission Assurance

| TOC | ChangeHistory | Preface | Chapter1 | Chapter2 | Chapter3 | Chapter4 | Chapter5 | Chapter6 | Chapter7 | Chapter8 | AppendixA | AppendixB | AppendixC | AppendixD | AppendixE | AppendixF | AppendixG | ALL |

Chapter 8. Protocols and Requirements for Delegating Quality Assurance Contract Administration Functions to the Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA)

8.1 Delegating Quality Assurance (QA) Contract Administration to DCMA

The processes associated with delegating QA contract administration functions to DCMA are varied across the life cycle of the project as well as across the fiscal year. Fiscal year-defined processes are development and execution of agency-to-agency budget agreements. Life-cycle-based processes are associated with verification of suppliers' conformance with contract QE and QA requirements. This chapter does not apply to non-Government project offices.

8.2 Letter of Delegation (LOD) Development and Initial Delivery

8.2.1 The Project Manager shall ensure that the following process elements are used when GCQA functions are delegated to DCMA:

a. A point of contact who is responsible for executing the QASP is assigned to provide leadership to DCMA for the tasks delegated to them, including establishing and negotiating tasking and changes to agreements or instructions.

b. NF 1430B, Quality Assurance, is used to:

(1) Document and coordinate draft statements of GCQA work and/or product acceptance work with DCMA.

(2) Provide preliminary surveillance plans for the prime contractor and relevant sub-tier suppliers.

(3) Identify reporting requirements and deliverable records for the work performed for the project by DCMA.

(4) Identify standard and specialty certifications to be held and training to be accomplished by DCMA personnel who will perform the work.

(5) Identify special workflow or work execution expectations (e.g., shift work, foreign locations).

(6) Coordinate cost estimates with DCMA.

(7) Submit the work delegation to DCMA through the project's procurement authority (e.g., CO).

Note 1: The project uses both the NF 1430B and the surveillance plan to communicate which contract administration functions, within the quality domain, are delegated to DCMA and which are retained (not delegated).

Note 2: DCMA will use the NF 1430B and the surveillance plan for staffing planning and assignments, budget estimates and other logistics planning. Specificity in the surveillance plan (e.g., number of document reviews, frequency of audits, and sample basis for inspections) should be used to facilitate communication of expectations, reflect the project's risk management strategy, and provide cost control.

c. Identify and supply relevant and required technical documents, instructions, and standards.

d. Document and communicate to DCMA, the work instructions and details that satisfy the requirements in 7.2.6 above throughout the period of performance.

e. Communicate the project's plans to DCMA for updating the surveillance plan and subsequently the NF 1430B (i.e., the LOD), as necessary over the life cycle of the project.

f. Provide a copy of the prime contract to the DCMA Center Integrator.

8.2.2 Budget Planning. Project Managers shall approve the cost estimate for the DCMA QA delegation prior to final submission of an original or updated LOD to DCMA for their acceptance.

8.2.3 Finalized LOD. Project Managers shall ensure that the final version of the LOD to be delivered to DCMA via the project's procurement authority complies with the following:

a. The open text boxes in NF 1430B are not used to modify the standard language of the form.

b. The surveillance plan, the contract, and the Project QA plan (or SMAP) are provided as attachments.

c. Personnel-specific requirements are not included (e.g., specific personnel assignments, personal services).

8.2.4 Project Managers shall request that a copy of the signed NF 1431, Letter of Acceptance of Contract Administration Delegation, is provided to the project's QA lead for the delegation. The signed NF 1431 documents acceptance of the LOD and that commencement of work by DCMA is authorized.

8.3 Yearly Letter of Delegation (LOD) Technical and Programmatic Review

8.3.1 Technical and Programmatic Review. Annually, OSMA requests each project to perform a technical and programmatic review of existing DCMA LODs to determine if an update is necessary for the work forecast for the forthcoming fiscal year. Changes to the surveillance plan for technical or programmatic reasons are typically cause for updates to an LOD as they impact cost (negatively or positively), can impact contract value, and impact DCMA personnel's work assignments.

8.3.2 Annually, regardless of the need to update the technical or programmatic details in the LOD for the forthcoming fiscal year, the Project Manager shall generate a cost estimate (in hours) for the forthcoming year's work-delegation to DCMA that is commensurate with the type and volume of duties applicable for the one-year period of performance.

8.4 Updating a Letter of Delegation (LOD) or a LOD's Budget within a Fiscal Year

8.4.1 Technical and programmatic changes that occur on projects (e.g., specification changes, contract modifications, schedule slips, additions of sub-tier suppliers) are likely to drive changes to the surveillance plan, requiring a change to the DCMA LOD. Changing an LOD within a fiscal year may affect the yearly NASA-DCMA budget agreement and thus follow a slightly different process than used for the yearly LOD update and budget call. The Project Manager shall use the following process elements when LODs are changed within a fiscal year.

a. Contract modifications are provided to the project's QA lead(s) for the current LOD(s).

b. Relevant surveillance plans are updated as necessary.

c. Renegotiate the LOD with DCMA, including the cost estimate, to align with the new contract modification and surveillance plan.

d. Comply with 8.2.3 for revised NF 1430Bs.

e. Use coordination of budget changes with the OSMA Technical Liaison to DCMA as a precondition for finalizing the updated LOD.

f. Use Project Management approval for the updated cost estimate as a precondition for reissuing the NF 1480B (i.e., LOD) to DCMA for acceptance.

8.4.2 Coordinating a Revised Budget. When changes to LOD budgets are anticipated to occur within a fiscal year, with or without a change to the LOD, the Project Manager shall ensure that the change is precoordinated with the OSMA Technical Liaison to DCMA to ensure those changes do not conflict with other Agency-level agreements existing between DCMA and NASA.

8.5 Executing a Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) Letter of Delegation (LOD)

8.5.1 The Project Manager shall ensure that the following process elements are used when DCMA is performing functions in accordance with a released LOD.

a. DCMA personnel assigned to perform the work defined in the LOD have the requisite training and/or certification credentials.

b. Information, guidance, and leadership are provided by NASA to DCMA personnel who are assigned to the LOD tasks including:

(1) The nature of the project's technical and programmatic objectives that are relevant to the production for which those DCMA assignees will provide QA on NASA's behalf.

(2) The project's relevant risk management strategies, critical milestones, and science and engineering performance objectives.

(3) The items listed in 7.2.6.

(4) Interpretation of the LOD and surveillance plan content and requirements.

(5) The schedule and ongoing schedule modifications.

(6) Relevant points of contact where they will perform their duties and other specialists or subject matter experts available to them for consultation.

(7) Additional points of contact for resolving concerns related to the LOD, work performed, or findings.

(8) Technical documentation not otherwise available (i.e., technical specifications and standards, drawings) and access to virtual work areas and repositories necessary for performance of their duties.

(9) Relevant processes, including documentation requirements and protocols, for reporting nonconformances, including missed GMIPs, and participation in materials, anomaly, and failure review boards.

(10) The process for communicating situational changes to the surveillance plan that temporarily reduce or increase the planned GCQA activity (i.e., cancelled GMIP) and for recording that decision.

(11) Specialty training required to perform delegated duties.

(12) The documentation and criteria necessary to perform delegated Government acceptance tasks.

(13) Coordinating with the DCMA personnel when the project or program have changed technical specifications or criteria (e.g., test limits, performance limits, inspection criteria, etc.).

c. Provide programmatic and technical status to the OSMA Technical Liaison to DCMA upon request and primarily through participating in the NASA-DCMA monthly technical review tag-up for the purposes of the OSMA Technical Liaison's early awareness and mitigation of concerns related to DCMA's work for NASA. Particular items of interest include:

(1) Significant departures from the existing LOD or budget plan (e.g., significant cost variances and over/underrun trends).

(2) New or changed LODs that will impact NASA's yearly budget commitment to DCMA.

(3) Conflicts that arise between the project and DCMA or between DCMA and the supplier where they are performing their work.

(4) Conflicts arising from attempts to re-delegate across the DCMA enterprise.

| TOC | ChangeHistory | Preface | Chapter1 | Chapter2 | Chapter3 | Chapter4 | Chapter5 | Chapter6 | Chapter7 | Chapter8 | AppendixA | AppendixB | AppendixC | AppendixD | AppendixE | AppendixF | AppendixG | ALL |
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