The following guidelines should be taken into account when deciding the appropriate warranty or guarantee terms and conditions to include in IT solicitations and the final negotiated contract:
Determine if procuring agency wants to specify the length of time the warranty is to run;
Determine if warranty is needed to prevent damage to existing resource information from computer viruses or shut down devices;
Select the guarantee or warranty special term and condition that best suits the needs of the agency for the particular solicitation; and
When considering a non-industry standard warranty, the agency should obtain the appropriate cost associated with the desired warranty; a written justification for the desired warranty and any additional cost to be included in the procurement file.
Many IT suppliers will agree to provide greater than 90-day warranty periods during negotiation, or even a 12-month for solution/development type contracts. Computer-off- the-shelf manufacturers generally offer 30 or 60-day warranty periods. Larger IT companies often provide 90-day warranty periods. Agencies should not have to reimburse a supplier for errors corrected or fixes made during a warranty period. The warranty period should start after final acceptance by the agency, while any procured annual maintenance or support would begin once the warranty period is over. For a more in-depth discussion of warranties refer to Chapter 25 of this manual, IT Contract Formation.