Working with RWAs and WRs
Working with Reimbursable Work Authorizations and RWA Work Requests
This page provides more information about the processes and required information for submitting RWA Work Requests (WRs) and managing Reimbursable Work Authorizations (RWAs) with the Reimbursable Services Program (RS). For information on billing and payments in specific, please consult the billing and payments with RS page. You can also learn more about the policies behind the RS work and the overall practices it follows.
Index of topics below:
- Submitting RWA Work Requests
- Amendments and new RWAs
- Managing fiscal years
- Substantial Completion and Closeout
Once you have an account on the PBS portal and have obtained access to eRETA, you can submit a WR for approval. Key steps are:
Submit an initial WR
As soon as you identify a need for a project or service, please send a WR in eRETA. This will prompt GSA to assign a project manager and work with you to develop requirements.
Begin creating a Description of Requirements
You will first develop a Description of Requirements for the work you want done, including, at a minimum: the location, the type of work, and a description of the work. This information may be vague at first, since you might not yet know what you need, but RS will work to refine this as part of your request. Precise requirements, including information such as square footage and styles desired, will allow GSA to accurately determine the level of work necessary. Ultimately, you will define a final statement of work that can drive cost estimates.
Work with RS to generate an initial cost estimate, an Independent Government Estimate
Your RS project manager can help generate a cost estimate based on your requirements. GSA does not charge for the cost of estimates themselves. You may also provide your own cost estimates, but it is always up to GSA to perform due diligence on the estimates to assess whether the costs are fair and reasonable. This is called an Independent Government Estimate (IGE). You will need to share the basis for your estimates with the GSA. If you are basing an estimate on historical costs, you must be sure to use projects with similar requirements, locations, and time constraints, and you must account for inflation.
Determine if you need preliminary services
While forming requirements and initial estimates you may determine you need to do preliminary work to better understand the final scope. You may, for example, need to do design work before you can demo an existing space and rebuild it. If you need these kinds of preliminary services, you will need to enter separate WRs for each of them, each with their own estimates. You will then create a WR for the whole project when you have better estimates based on the preliminary work.
Determine if you need to add a procurement schedule
If a procurement is anticipated more than 90 days beyond the acceptance of the RWA, you must include schedules and procurement activities and milestones.
Approve the final estimate
To submit a WR to GSA for acceptance, the RS project manager will form each initial estimate into one of two kinds of approved final estimate documents: a Summary Cost Estimate (SCE) for projects or an Overtime Utility Estimate (OUE) for services. After the PM has entered the final estimates into eRETA, you will have 30 days to approve it. Both will include GSA’s fee. [Learn more about SCEs and OUEs in our Quick Tip].
Submit final WR to GSA in eRETA
The RS team aims to respond within 15 days of a fully-executable WR. Project variables such as regional resource availability, project complexity, and customer requirements status may impact the response time.
Receive Acceptance Letter
If GSA accepts the WR, you will receive an Acceptance Letter. The Acceptance Letter communicates GSA’s acceptance of the RWA, signaling the project execution of the RWA, and it is when customer agencies should obligate the funding associated with the RWA. It is important to remember customer agencies should only obligate funds once the agency receives the Acceptance Letter from PBS. If GSA does not accept the project, you will be notified through eRETA.
Once GSA has accepted your project, it will begin work. After the project starts, you will need to manage any changes in scope through eRETA.
Fiscal year-end information content
RWA substantial completion means the RWA is substantially complete and the customer agency may take beneficial occupancy of the space. There may still be punch list items remaining, but the customer can use the space for its intended purpose.
Closeout means that the project is financially ready for closure, meaning all funds have been obligated, expensed, billed and collected. This signifies the termination date in RETA can be set.
The customer should submit an N-input code (Cancel/Early Completion) amendment in eRETA. If costs have been incurred on any nonrecurring RWA, PBS should follow the substantial completion process instead of this cancellation process. If costs have not been incurred, upon receipt of a cancellation request from the customer, PBS should take steps to cancel the RWA in RETA.