Are you ready for the USAID Pre-Award Audit?
When your organization is notified that it is a finalist for an award from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), USAID may conduct a pre-award survey as part of its risk assessment before the award is made. The purpose of this survey is to assess whether your organization is capable of managing the award, and can comply with its requirements and applicable regulations.
The pre-award survey may be conducted either by a team comprised of programmatic, financial, and audit staff from USAID or another U.S. Government (USG) agency such as the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA), or by a local accounting firm.
Depending on the results of the pre-award survey, USAID may either make the award, not make the award, or award with specific conditions.
Cooperative Agreements and Grants
For all assistance awards (i.e., cooperative agreements or grants), the USAID Agreement Officer (AO) must conduct a formal survey if any of the following apply: 1) USAID is uncertain about your capacity to perform financially or programmatically; 2) the AO has knowledge of deficiencies in your organization’s annual audit; or 3) the AO determines it to be in the best interest of the U.S. Government. In addition, if the prospective award is not intended to be a Fixed Amount Award, the AO must conduct a pre-award survey if your organization has never had a USAID award or has not had an award from any USG agency within the last five years.
If you are a U.S. organization, the survey addresses whether your organization has the following systems and processes which meet the requirements of 2 CFR 200:
· accounting, recordkeeping, and financial management systems;
· reasonable internal controls in accordance with the applicable cost principles including segregation of duties, handling of cash, contracting and procurement procedures, personnel and travel policies;
· property management systems and standards; and
· subaward management and monitoring processes.
If you are a non-U.S. organization, the survey addresses whether your organization meets the requirements of the USAID Standard Provisions for Non-U.S. Nongovernmental Organizations (ADS 303mab).
If the prospective award is a contract governed by the FAR and AIDAR, a pre-award survey is requested by the Contracting Officer (C.O.) when there is not sufficient information to make a determination of whether your organization can perform the contract. The pre-award survey generally focuses primarily on your organization’s financial capability and accounting system in accordance with the requirements of the FAR. The survey evaluates your organization’s financial competence and credit needs as well as the adequacy and suitability of your accounting system to support the proposed contract. The C.O. might also request an evaluation of your technical, quality assurance, and production capabilities.
If the contract will be either fixed price at or below the simplified acquisition threshold (currently $150,000) or is for the purchase of commercial items, a pre-award survey is not normally requested. For cost-reimbursable contracts or fixed price contracts above the simplified acquisition threshold, the C.O. will determine the need for a pre-award survey based on 1) your organization’s experience; 2) your organization’s past performance record; 3) the adequacy of financial information submitted with the proposal; 4) the dollar value of the proposed contract; and 5) your organization’s past USG audits.