​PROTEST UPDATE: Protest of VA’s $287M National Service Desk award dismissed

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DIGEST

1. Protest that agency failed to give adequate consideration to awardee’s potential organizational conflicts of interest is denied where the agency reasonably evaluated whether the awardee had the ability to shape the ground rules for the procurement or unequal access to information, and where the protester’s assertions fail to present hard facts indicating the existence of a conflict.

2. Protest challenging the rating assigned to protester’s technical proposal is denied where the protester fails to demonstrate that it was prejudiced by the alleged error; even if the protester had received a higher technical rating, the awardee would have remained both higher-rated and lower-priced than the protester.

DECISION

Systems Made Simple, Inc. (SMS), of Vienna, Virginia, protests the issuance of a task order to ASM Research, LLC (ASMR), of Fairfax, Virginia, under request for task execution plan (RTEP) No. T4-0800, issued by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) for National Service Desk (NSD) help desk services. SMS argues that the agency failed to reasonably analyze the awardee’s organizational conflict of interest, challenges the agency’s technical evaluation, and contends that the resulting award decision was improper.

We deny the protest…

G2X TAKE: Citing organizational conflicts of interest where the awardee had the ability to shape the ground rules for the procurement and the rating assigned to protester’s technical bid as grounds for protest, it appears the government disagreed as the challenge put forth by Systems Made Simple on the $287M National Service Desk award to ASMR/Accenture was dismissed.

If you are interested in reading the full protest put forth by Systems Made Simple, the redacted, but detailed 14 page document can be found here. The 6 other bidders who took a shot at this will likely want to glean what they can, though the significant $10+M difference in bid price definitely played a role.

ASMR/Accenture can breathe a little bit easier on this one, at least for the next few years, though this will remain one of the more coveted contracts at VA.



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