Government References Didn’t Complete PPQs? “Too Bad,” Says GAO

Federal contractors frequently find themselves in the position of needing to establish their past performance credentials to secure future contracts – the government’s form of a reference check. The government often performs these reference checks by requesting completed past performance questionnaires, or PPQs, which the government uses as an indicator of the offeror’s ability to perform a future contract.

But what happens when a contractor’s government point of contact fails to return a completed PPQ? As a recent GAO decision demonstrates, if the solicitation requires offerors to return completed PPQs, the agency need not independently reach out to government officials who fail to complete those PPQs.

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Contractor Doesn’t Use Excel, Gets Booted From Competition

A prospective contractor was kicked out of a competition for submitting its pricing in PDF format, instead of in Microsoft Excel files, as called for in the solicitation.

In a bid protest filed by the excluded offeror, the GAO held that the procuring agency properly deemed the offeror unacceptable for failing to use Excel.

Somewhere, Bill Gates is smiling.

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