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TechFAR Handbook

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Citation Edit

TechFAR Handbook (full-text).

Overview Edit

The TechFAR Handbook highlights the flexibilities in the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) that can help agencies implement "plays" from the Digital Services Playbook that would be accomplished with acquisition support — with a particular focus on how to use contractors to support an iterative, customer-driven software development process, as is routinely done in the private sector.

This handbook concentrates primarily on software development procurements (excluding nondevelopmental and commercially available off-the-shelf items) and, in particular, the use of Agile principles. Software represents a significant component of IT contract spending and plays a role in the success of most, if not all, Federal programs. The handbook assumes familiarity with OMB's Digital Services Playbook, which discusses strategies and best practices for agencies building digital services, and specifies Agile, iterative development as a critical component for success.

For each stage of the acquisition lifecycle, this document highlights key regulatory provisions and explains how Agile approaches can be effectively and successfully implemented consistent with core values of public procurement, including impartiality, accountability for results, and providing the best value to the taxpayer. It does not teach Agile software development, but includes practice tips and sample language from agencies that have successfully used these tools to support mission needs.

The vision for the TechFAR is that it will be expanded in future iterations to address many areas of IT.

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