Huntsville Center achieves Best in Class designation

Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville
Published Jan. 12, 2017

Outside of the General Services Administration, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the first agency to deliver a usable/active acquisition vehicle to the Category Management Leadership Council for evaluation and designation of Best in Class.

The Office of Management and Budget awarded this designation to the U.S. Army Engineering and Support Center, Huntsville’s Facility Reduction Program Dec. 15, 2016.

To earn the award, Huntsville Center had to prove itself as a governmentwide solution provider resource by meeting rigorous criteria under Category Management business practices.

Earning this designation included the scrutiny of the CMLC that is chaired by the Office of Federal Procurement Policy administrator and representatives from several federal agencies that reviewed and evaluated everything from the FRP’s planning processes to its performance management practices.

The CMLC established five major criteria with a total of 16 major and sub-category criteria that acquisition vehicles must meet to be considered Best in Class. 

Meeting and surpassing the process in order to be awarded the Best in Class designation, put the FRP in the ballpark to obtain work from any federal agency, said Chris Shepherd, FRP program manager.

“When looking at who to pick, this kind of puts us on the top of the list,” Shepherd said. 

Category Management involves breaking down different areas of federal spending into categories of commonly purchased products and services to enable more efficient management of government dollars.

“This is a common theme in industry, and the federal government is now adopting the philosophy on how to better handle acquisitions from the perspective of Category Management,” said Steve Goolsby, Base Operations, Facilities Repair and Renewal and FRP branch chief.

Within Category Management, the FRP falls under one of the 10 category management hallways called Facilities and Construction that has the largest of all spend categories at $75.7 billion (total FY14). This annual budget covers construction-related materials and services, facility-related materials and services and facilities purchase and lease.

To view the common government spend categories, visit

“I am excited that the Facilities and Construction Category was able to provide its Best-in-Class stamp of approval for the FRP contract vehicle.  In addition to meeting the standardized criteria imposed on all BIC candidates, this BIC determination recognized the role the FRP contract has played in streamlining facility removal efforts within multiple federal agencies,” says Facilities and Construction Category Manager Mary Ruwwe. “The F&C Category will now begin marketing the solution so that all federal agencies will be aware of the Best-in-Class demolition solutions available through the Huntsville USACE office.”

Benefits on the saving solutions of the FRP include:

  • FRP eliminates excess facilities and structures to reduce fixed installation costs and achieve energy savings. In fiscal years 2004 through 2015, FRP removed more than 22 million sq. feet from real property inventories with an overall landfill diversion by weight of 70 percent.
  • The FRP focuses on doing stand-alone demolition work without follow-on construction projects. This allows the program to use a specialized contractor base that can drive substantial savings on the cost of removal per square foot.

  • Though the customer agency can alter FRP's approach to fit their needs, typically everything under $500,000 is awarded to the 60 percent of contractors who are 8(a) set-asides. This has helped the program exceed its small business utilization goals every year.

  • FRP heavily leverages re-used, recycled, and re-purposed materials and is currently at 72 percent, exceeding the EPA's goal by 12 percent. This is both a benefit to the environment and can lower project costs.