GSA Government-wide Section 508 Accessibility Program

Acquisition Metric Assessment Guidelines and Decision Tree

Return to Guidelines for Assessing Program Maturity

Definition
Why is this important?
Examples
Decision Tree Flowchart (New)

Definition

This metric defines to what extent an Agency conducts validation of procurement solicitations to ensure incorporation of Section 508 contract language into Statements of Work and Performance Work Statements.

Why is this important?

When purchasing technology, an Agency cannot ensure it is purchasing technology which conforms to the Section 508 law unless the applicable Section 508 standards and requirements are included in Statements of Work and Performance Work Statements. Inclusion of Section effective 508 contract language clearly states what sections of the Section 508 standards apply to the technology being purchased, and provide an opportunity for potential vendors to demonstrate they can meet the requirements.

Examples

The following examples are provided to demonstrate how an Agency may translate their current operations against the maturity measures and are not intended to represent all possibilities.

  1. Ad Hoc: There are no formal acquisition policies, processes and procedures to ensure Section 508 requirements are properly included in solicitations. The Agency approach is defined on a case-by-case basis. Sometimes Section 508 requirements are included in technology procurement solicitations, sometimes they are not. When they are included, in some cases specific applicable standards are identified, while in other cases only generic requirement statements are provided.

  2. Planned: Agency acquisition policies, processes and procedures are established that require all technology procurement Statements of Work and Performance Work Statements to include applicable Section 508 requirements or proper identification of an exception, and they have been communicated to the appropriate Agency stakeholders. However, no resources have been assigned to implement the policies, or resources have been assigned but have not yet been trained on how to incorporate Section 508 requirements into procurement solicitations.

  3. Resourced: Agency acquisition policies, processes and procedures are established and communicated to the appropriate stakeholders. Agency acquisition staff and Section 508 program support staff are made available and trained in how to select appropriate Section 508 requirements to include in procurements, and when and how exceptions should be reviewed and approved. Applicable Section 508 contract language is properly included in Agency acquisition documents in accordance with established policies, processes and procedures.

  4. Measured: Agency acquisition staff and Section 508 program support staff are trained and made available to implement established Agency Section 508 acquisition policies, processes and procedures, and consistently adhere to them. The Agency validates adherence by collecting and tracking data on Section 508 acquisition processes, and uses results to inform decisions and improve the effectiveness and efficiency of Section 508 acquisition activities.

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Decision Tree Flowchart (New)

Use the following decision tree to ascertain the most appropriate maturity level. Scroll down for text version.

Acquisition decision tree. Refer to the full text version below this image for detailed descriptions.

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Decision Tree - Text Version:

Maturity Question Implied Maturity Level If the Answer is “No” Key Considerations before moving onto the next question
  1. Do you have a formal acquisition policy for Section 508?
Ad Hoc: You have a general outline, a circulated draft or policy, or one is being developed.  
  1. Does your policy address technology solicitations created by all agency components?
Ad Hoc: Formal policies have been defined for some parts of our agency, but not all relevant groups that acquire technology.  
  1. Do you have an implementation plan?
Ad Hoc: Agency acquisition policy, processes and procedures are not established, or are in the process of being established. If the answer is yes, then an implementation plan has been created which includes policies, processes and procedures and can include checklists.
  1. Have you communicated the policies, processes and procedures to appropriate stakeholders
Ad Hoc: The policies, processes and procedures have been communicated to some, but not all key stakeholders, or this is currently underway. If the answer is yes, policies, processes and procedures have been communicated to all key stakeholders who have responsibility for implementation.
  1. Have specific resources been assigned to implement the policy?
Ad Hoc: Resources are not available or assigned If the answer is yes, specific resources have been identified.
  1. Are the assigned resources trained in how to incorporate Section 508 requirements into solicitations?
Planned: The assigned resources have been identified but they have not been trained on how to incorporate Section 508 requirements into solicitations If the answer is yes, the resources know how to incorporate Section 508 requirements in solicitations, and when and how exceptions should be reviewed and approved.
  1. Are the applicable Section 508 standards included in all solicitations?
Planned: According to policy, Section 508 requirements are required to be included for technology solicitations, but this is not consistently adhered to for all solicitations or the Section 508 languages this is applied is generic or vague. If the answer is yes, then all technology procurement solicitations have the specific section 508 requirements listed for each technology deliverable, and exceptions where applicable.
  1. Does the agency validate vendor conformance claims?
Planned: Vendor conformance claims are received but are not reviewed or validated by trained staff. If the answer is yes, the agency applies the appropriate level of due diligence (expert review to hands-on testing) to validate vendor conformance claims.
  1. Does the agency validate adherence to policies, processes and procedures?
Resourced: Policies are implemented but tracking data is not collected or analyzed. If the answer is yes, then the agency has implemented policies, processes and procedures, and takes steps to validate the proper 508 language is included in solicitations
  1. Is data used to inform decisions and improve effectiveness and efficiency?
Resourced: Data is collected but is not analyzed and no improvements have been made.  
  1. You are at the Measured level if the following is true: Policy is fully implemented, staffed and is consistently adhered to. Data is collected to improve Section 508 Acquisition activities
   

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