When you submit a proposal how does the agency evaluate the bids they receive?
Solicitation documents are formatted in a specific, consistent way. Look for Section M “Evaluation Factors for Award”, where the agency outlines exactly how they will evaluate any proposal they receive. Generally, proposals are evaluated in three areas: Past Performance, Technical/Management, and Price.
For a simple commercial product, price and delivery time may be the only determining factors, whereas for a more complex service proposal the agency may consider other factors. Section M clearly states how the agency will make its evaluation, and how price, technical ability, past performance or other factors will be weighed when making their decision.
Lowest Price vs Best Value: For simple purchases price may be the only factor. At other times the agency will award based on “Best Value” – a combination of delivery, past performance, technical ability and price.
Low Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) bids are initially evaluated just for compliance with the technical criteria listed in the solicitation document. Any proposal that doesn’t follow the instructions to the letter will be considered unacceptable, and taken out of consideration. All technically acceptable proposals receive the same passing score. All remaining proposals are then evaluated by price. This means that once you have passed the minimum technically acceptable hurdle, your bid has equal footing with all other passing proposals – price becomes the only other criteria
Service Proposals: Evaluations for Service contracts may include several factors, including Past Performance, Technical and Managerial Approach, Quality Control, and Key Personnel.
If you don’t submit the required information your offer will be considered ‘unacceptable’, and will not be considered for award.