Is selection and acquisition

CWT states that the contracting officer changed the technical evaluation "by substantially downgrading CWT in critical criteria. The contracting officer drafted the source selection decision, which was approved by the source selection authority SSA. The record, however, shows a well-documented, reasoned evaluation and award decision.

Is selection and acquisition

CWT states that the contracting officer changed the technical evaluation "by substantially downgrading CWT in critical criteria. The contracting officer drafted the source selection decision, which was approved by the source selection authority SSA.

The record, however, shows a well-documented, reasoned evaluation and award decision. Despite CWT's insistence that the source selection authority should have adopted the TET's adjectival ratings, source selection officials are not bound by the evaluation judgments of lower level evaluators; they may come to their own reasonable evaluation conclusions.

Here, we find that the source selection decision documented reasonable evaluation findings, including documenting in detail any disagreement with certain of the TET's findings and adjectival ratings. We address a few representative examples below. The contracting officer stated that she did not consider "incumbent status in itself to be a strength" and further maintained that while she found that CWT had addressed all of the elements of the PWS in its approach she did not find that CWT "offer[ed] an approach that [was] innovative or better than that which OCC currently has.

The contracting officer explains that CWT's quotation identified strengths, but not enough strengths to warrant an excellent rating. Therefore, the contracting officer lowered CWT's rating to good.

For example, the contracting officer considered it a strength that each agent would go through OCC-specific training and would be tested at the end of training.

The contracting officer also found that ADTRAV's use of the RezTracker system merited assessment of a strength because it allows the vendor to monitor the status of airline reservations and would automatically generate a refund if a reservation remains unused 10 days after the scheduled departure date.

The protester disagrees with the contracting officer's findings and the adjustments in the ratings of both its and ADTRAV's quotations arguing that the contracting officer's determinations failed to comply with the solicitation requirements and were unreasonable.

However, based on our review of the record, we find no basis to question the reasonableness of the contracting officer's evaluation and findings regarding the quotations of CWT and ADTRAV under this factor. Corporate Experience CWT argues that the contracting officer unreasonably lowered its corporate experience rating and raised the corporate experience rating of the awardee.

CWT argues that the contracting officer's "extraordinary action" of contacting ADTRAV's corporate experiences references resulted in an increased rating for that firm's corporate experience from acceptable to good, yet the contracting officer "made no attempt" to contact CWT's corporate experience references.

Protester's Comments at CWT argues that it was "substantially prejudiced" by the failure of the agency to treat the vendors equally in the evaluation. However, because of the "limited information" described in the corporate experience narrative, the contracting officer took exception to the adjectival rating assigned by the TET for this factor.

The contracting officer noted that CWT's quotation contained little more than a listing of tasks, and provided only a scant description of the work performed, and why the work should be viewed as similar to the OCC requirements. The contracting officer further stated that the agency was not required to consider CWT's experience under its incumbent contract because CWT had not provided it as a reference.

Accordingly, the contracting officer lowered CWT's corporate experience rating to acceptable. ADTRAV ultimately received an acceptable rating for corporate experience from the TET, even though the evaluators initially assigned a deficiency under this factor because none of ADTRAV's corporate experience examples demonstrated experience with transition.

Is selection and acquisition

The contracting officer further concluded that ADTRAV's response "more than adequately addresse[d] the transition requirements in the [PWS] and elevate[d] their rating from a deficiency to a strength based on their experience transitioning from the OCC incumbent.

Here, the record shows that the contracting officer was aware of and considered the findings of the TET and that, based on her evaluation, she disagreed with some of those findings and reasonably documented her conclusions. In addition, the source selection decision referenced information contained in each vendor's quotation.

While CWT disagrees with these findings, the protester has not provided any basis for our Office to find that the contracting officer's findings, and the SSA's adoption of them, were unreasonable.

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The protester further argues that vendors were treated unequally as a result of the agency's decision to contact the corporate experience references of the awardee, but not CWT's corporate experience references.

The protester argues that the contracting officer used information it received from these references to increase the corporate experience rating of the awardee without similarly contacting CWT's references to gain additional information about its corporate experience.

The contracting officer acknowledges that she contacted ADTRAV's corporate experience references, however, she states that contact with these references related to her past performance evaluation. The solicitation stated that the agency would use the contracts listed under corporate experience to evaluate past performance.

The contracting officer states that she did not contact these references "to justify" raising ADTRAV's corporate experience rating.Kronos® talent management software helps your team better manage compensation, conduct evaluations, and promote ongoing performance development.

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