The Best Relationships Are    5Based on Contracts      

How the government chooses what it buys is often not a function of what’s best, but of how easily it can be bought. “There were a lot of times we won business simply because we were on the right contract vehicle and our software was good enough,” one salesman told us.

The contractual process in the federal government isn’t a mere means to an end. The process influences outcomes, and companies can be battered or buoyed by it depending on their understanding of the mechanics involved.

We’ve dedicated this entire chapter to the fundamentals of government contracting. Make no mistake—although it’s on the technical side, without this knowledge, winning information technology business from the ...

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