GAO: Offeror’s High Labor Hours Need Not Be Raised In Discussions

An agency was not required to inform an offeror that its proposed base year labor hours were too high, even though the offeror proposed more than twice as many labor hours as the awardee.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that a procuring agency did not act improperly by failing to raise the protester’s high labor hours in discussions, because the protester’s labor hours, while much higher than the awardee’s, were not deemed unacceptably high under the RFQ’s lowest-price, technically acceptable evaluation scheme.

Continue reading

GAO: Agency Unreasonably Failed To Consider Incumbent Employees’ Salaries

A procuring agency unreasonably assigned an awardee an “Outstanding” score for its proposal to retain a large portion of the incumbent workforce, even though the awardee intended to offer the incumbent employees significantly lower salaries than the employees were earning on the incumbent contract.

In a recent bid protest decision, the GAO held that it was unreasonable for the agency to fail to consider whether the differences in compensation would affect the awardee’s ability to recruit and retain the incumbent workforce.

Continue reading

GAO: Agency Improperly Adjusted Contractor’s Proposed Level of Effort

In today’s tight budgetary climate, performance-based acquisitions and similar techniques to maximize efficiency seem to be on the rise.  Performance-based acquisitions can offer unique opportunities for contractors to develop innovative approaches to meet an agency’s needs while minimizing costs.

In a recent GAO bid protest decision, one offeror proposed fewer labor hours–and a different labor mix–than the awardee, resulting in a lower overall price.  Nevertheless, without explanation, the procuring agency in question unilaterally raised the offeror’s labor hours to match the hours proposed by the awardee, resulting in a corresponding increase in evaluated price.  The GAO was none too pleased with the agency’s action, sustaining the offeror’s bid protest.

Continue reading