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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

CSRA battles for lost $443M Strategic Command contract

CSRA is battling to hang on to a legacy Computer Sciences Corp. contract that it recently lost to HP Enterprise Services.

CSRA, as CSC, originally won the Air Force IT Capabilities Contract in 2004. The contract was worth about $525 million to support the U.S. Strategic Command. On April 21, the company lost the recompete to HP. The new contract is worth $443.2 million over about 10 years, according to Deltek.

When HP won, CSRA quickly filed a protest with the Government Accountability Office. A decision is due from GAO on Aug. 10.

Under the contract, STRATCOM is receiving infrastructure support services, systems engineering, and management and sustainment services. During the contract, STRATCOM headquarters at Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska expected to move to a new building. The contract includes support for that move.

When CSC first won the contract in 2004, it describes how it would manage and refresh desktop computers, servers and networks. The contract was performance-based and included service-level agreements the company needed to meet.

Likewise, the recompete includes service level agreements and the new contract also includes fixed-price elements and cost-plus aspects.

While the Air Force described the evaluation criteria as best value, it reads more like a lowest price, technically acceptable competition. According to solicitation documents, the evaluation was based on past performance, technical risk and total evaluated price. Past performance and technical risk carried equal weight, but total evaluated price was more important.

Of the proposals found to have an acceptable technical approach without high risk and rated with substantial confidence on past performance, an award was to be made to the offer with the lowest price.

Sounds a lot like LPTA to me.

And I know LPTA is on the best value continuum, but when you read the description of the work to be done under this contract, you would think a different kind of best value competition would be held. After all, these are mission critical systems.

Of course, there also is the other argument: The Air Force is asking primarily for commercial products and services and the bidders are likely proposing similar solutions, so isn’t a price shootout the best value? Maybe.

No matter what, this was a longtime customer for CSRA and, the loss has to sting. They declined to comment.

We’ll have to watch as this goes through the GAO process. If it goes to a full decision and not a corrective action, we should get some good insights on what the Air Force was thinking and what CSRA and HP were proposing.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on May 04, 2016 at 10:42 AM


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