Glossary of Defense Contracting Terms (T)

This Glossary provides you with the most frequently used terms in government and military base contracting. Familiarity with the language of government contracting is essential for doing business with the Department of Defense (DoD) and working with contracting offices at military bases and DoD agencies.  You may also find it helpful to use our master list of Acronyms frequently used in DoD contracting.


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View ACRONYMS used in Defense Contracting


TARGET COST     The estimated cost of a contract as initially negotiated, adjusted for any change in contract requirements.

TASK ORDER    An order for services placed against an established contract or with government sources.

TECHNICAL ANALYSIS   Review by personnel having specialized knowledge, skills, experience, or capability in engineering, science, or management of the proposed types and quantities of materials, labor, processes, special tooling, facilities, the reasonableness of scrap and spoilage, and other factors set forth in the proposals) in order to determine the need for and reasonableness of the proposed resources, assuming reasonable economy and efficiency.

TIME AND MATERIALS CONTRACT   A contract providing for the procurement of supplies/services on the basis of direct labor hours at specified fixed hourly rates and material at cost or at some bid percentage discount from manufacturer's catalog or list prices.

TRADEOFF PROCESS    In a negotiated acquisition, a procedure that permits consideration of tradeoffs among cost or price and non-cost factors and allows the Government to accept other than the lowest priced proposal. The perceived benefits of the higher priced proposal must merit the additional cost and the rationale must for tradeoffs must be documented in the contract file.

TRIAL BALLOON   A tentative plan offered to test the reaction of a particular audience.  


Pentagon Spokesman Department of Defense (DoD)

Guidance for Doing Business with Military Bases


The Wait Can Be Long!
Often the waiting list to get into see a Small Business Specialist at a military base can be long... frequently very long. And when your appointment date finally arrives, you might only get a few minutes of consultation. 
Why Not Get the Help You Need Today!
You can download and use our helpful defense contracting guidebooks. They are easy to read and packed with valuable information you will find extremely helpful for doing business with the Department of Defense and with military bases.

Download and Use our Helpful Guidebooks 

 Defense Studies Institute Small Business Specialist 


   Defense Studies Institute Army Corps of Engineers

Defense Studies Institute Marine Corps Defense Studies Institute Government Subcontractor
What Do Military Bases Purchase?
Master list of products, materials, equipment, and services routinely purchased by military bases and DoD organizations. 
Doing Business at Military Bases
Small business opportunities and points of contact at military bases and DoD agencies across the United States.
Subcontracting Opportunities
Detailed step-by-step guidance for becoming a successful subcontractor or supplier to prime defense contractors.