WT Business Beat

By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

A tale of two protests: one loser and one winner

It is a tale of one contract and two protests with decidedly different results for each dissatisfied company. Both Perspecta and MetroStar Systems pursued the Justice Department’s $1.6 billion IT Support Services 5 contract.

Both companies lost the competition in the second of the two-phase IT Support Services 5 procurement. They also argued Justice conducted flawed technical evaluations, which resulted in flawed best-value decisions.

But the issues and claims at hand were different enough that the Government Accountability Office kept the two cases separate, rather than combine them into a single decision as it often does.

The outcomes are very different: MetroStar gains another shot at getting a sport on the contract, while Perspecta sees its protest denied and is out.

For Perspecta, the loss of the contract may be disappointing but isn’t a severe blow. According to Deltek data, Perpsecta pulled in about $35.9 million in task orders over an eight-year period. The Hewlett-Packard Enterprise Services business won a spot on ITSS-4 in 2011.

The companies had to provide responses to two sample task orders as part of their bids. Perspecta argued there was unstated criteria used in the evaluation, which created a flawed result.

GAO interestingly agreed but said any errors found did not result in a competitive disadvantage to Perspecta.

GAO said that even if the errors were corrected, Perspecta still would have the highest-priced proposal and would be equally rated technically to the other bidders at best. This would still justify the the exclusion of Perspecta.

In the case of MetroStar, errors by Justice may have impacted the ratings of the winner bidders to the point that the company could reasonably win a spot on the contract vehicle. MetroStar’s rating would go up and several of the winners' technical ratings would go down.

GAO wants Justice to re-evaluate proposals and make a new source selection decision. Justice also must pay MetroStar’s costs.

Meanwhile, the large business winners are still waiting to start work under the contract. AceInfo Solutions (now part of Dovel Technologies), NTT Data, Booz Allen Hamilton, CACI International and General Dynamics IT were selected late last year.

The ITSS 5 contract also has a slate of small business winners but that part of the contract has not been caught up in protests.

Those winners are:

  • AOC Fusion Inc. joint venture
  • Favor TechConsulting LLC
  • Fig Leaf Software -- Concept Solutions joint venture
  • Halfaker & Associates
  • Information Technology Coalition Inc.
  • IntePros Federal Inc.
  • Logistics Systems Inc.
  • Nester Consulting (does business as GovernmentCIO)
  • Network Design Inc.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on May 04, 2020 at 9:41 AM


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