Jump to content
The Wifcon Forums and Blogs

slange

Definition of "farily considered"?

Recommended Posts

In several places in FAR 8.4 (e.g. 8.405-1( d)(4), 8.405-2 ( c)(3)(iii)( C), 8.405-3(B)(1)(ii)( C), 8.405-3( B)(2)(vi), and 8.405-3( c)(2)(iii)( A)(3)) COs are instructed to “Ensure all quotes received are fairly considered and award is made in accordance with the evaluation criteria in the RFQ.”

The question that has been posed in my office is what does “fairly considered” really mean? Does “fairly considered” mean "evaluate" [per the RFQ]? Did GAO ever define “fairly considered” in a protest decision in such a way that the definition could be applied to all acquisitions under FAR 8.4 (i.e., the concept of fair consideration did not hinge on specifics of the given case)? I wasn’t able to find anything, but I could have missed it.

The reason for this question is this: if an agency receives an unwieldy number of responses to an RFQ following the ordering procedures of FAR 8.405, can the agency simply decide it is only going to evaluate X number of responses (say 10; rather than the 20 quotes received)? [Doubtful, yes, but thought I’d ask] Would it be appropriate to say in the RFQ that the agency will only consider X number of responses (maybe the first 10 it receives).

I want to end by saying that in no way would I ever recommend or condone either of actions in the preceding paragraph: they are arbitrary and patently unfair, in my opinion. However, I could be wrong and I’d like to hear what others have to say. And I’d like to know if there such a GAO case exists (second paragraph).

Appreciate your time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"All quotes received" seems fairly clear. It doesn't seem to mean only a wieldy number of them.

And it would seem fair to consider all those quotes in accordance with the terms of the RFQ. Don't you think?

You won't find more in the GAO decisions.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In its decisions involving the evaluation of quotes submitted under a FAR 8.4 procurement, the GAO has consistently stated that it “ … will review the record to ensure that the agency’s evaluation is reasonable and consistent with the terms of the solicitation and applicable procurement laws and regulations.” See a recent decision involving a FAR 8.4 competition: United Facility Services Corporation d/b/a EASTCO Building Services, B-408749.2, Jan. 17, 2014.

http://www.gao.gov/assets/670/660296.pdf.

For me, it is indisputable that you must evaluate all quotes you receive against the criteria you identify in your solicitation.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with the previous commenters. Perhaps one possible solution would be to set the acquisition aside for a specific socioeconomic group, thereby meeting your agency's goals and reducing the number of anticipated responses... just a thought.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I assume that you would be evaluating performance capability or some other technical aspect in addition to price. If price is a significant discriminator, could you set up an evaluation scheme that limits the number of proposals to be evaluated, based upon price? For example, state in the solicitation that you will first evaluate the quotes within lowest x prices (x = a number, like 10 or 20) and if you can find a suitable firm or product within that price range you won't look at higher priced quotes. Then, you will expand the range until you find a suitable quote. Also, if price is the discriminator among acceptable quotes you could state that you will evaluate based upon price and stop when you find a technically acceptable quote or proposal. Just some ideas...

The key would be to state the scheme in the solicitation or request per the regulations.

Not being an expert at using the Schedules, others would have to confirm the acceptability of these approaches.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One could consider lowest total cost to the government in lieu of lowest price, factoring in other government costs associated with award to a certain firm or product.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×