June 07, 2013

A last note on Best Value procurements - remember not to let the Requisitioner define what constitutes a "technically qualified offeror".

CPSR Teams consider an offeror "technically qualified" when the procurement professional has a reasonable expectation that the offeror can submit a technically sufficient proposal. 

This isn't a high bar at the end of the day - the offeror has to be technically able to respond to the RFQ and the procurement professional cannot possess reliable evidence to the contrary. Here are a some points: 

  • If you've precluded potential offerors from continued participation in RFQs for recurring orders because they always come in with a higher price or unable to meet order delivery requirements, that doesn't mean they should necessarily be precluded from future procurement activities. From DCMA's perspective, offerors should be given the opportunity to remediate their proposal process after losses - if they are permanently precluded from participation they can't remediate.
  • There are many types of companies that can be reasonably expected to submit a technically sufficient proposal for highly trained and qualified personnel where there is no objective evidence that the potential awardee of a sole source procurement (the long way to say "the SME the COTR wants") is the only qualified offeror. Specialty staffing agencies (e.g. ones that specialize in former military, cleared personnel, etc.) and large business contractors can be reasonably expected to respond to SME RFQs. While I wouldn't suggest using LBs repeatedly for this purpose (as they may take exception to being used as a basis of comparison without award), staffing companies never get tired of sending over resumes. And if they do, use one of the other couple dozen staffing agencies that specialize in former military and cleared personnel.  

In either case, don't be afraid to use the evaluation criteria to weed out the unacceptable. With SME procurements, the customer has provided SOW requirements via suggestion of the personnel to be placed - use their resume to create solicitation qualifications and potentially evaluation criteria. It's one of the few times COTR emails help with procurement documentation.