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Ineffective competition: Applying new math to one-offer awards.

Posted By Guy Timberlake, The American Small Business Coalition, LLC, Sunday, March 31, 2013
Updated: Sunday, March 31, 2013

In late February I posted a follow-up blog about YTD one-offer awards made by the U.S. Government that amounted to more than $1.5B, where nearly $900M of that was reported as competitive* for buys where Washington, DC was the place of performance (PoP).

Here's part of the reason I'm talking about this.

Under DOD’s Better Buying Power initiative, officials consider any solicitation in which DOD receives just one bid to be an "ineffective competition" and requires contracting officer's to revamp the requirement and put it out for bid, again.

FCW's Matthew Weigelt recently addressed the DoD side of this topic and provided some interesting data developed as a result of GAO looking into defense-related acquisition activities. In the article he states "In an analysis of 35 one-offer awards, GAO’s auditors found contracting officers had incorrectly coded 10 of the awards in the procurement database that DOD relies on to measure the impact of its new requirement. But six of the 10 awards were noncompetitive awards, and the remaining four had received multiple offers."

For the sake of simplicity, let's round up to a fudge factor of fifty-percent. If we apply that to dollars awarded as of February 26th, that would give us nearly $450M in "real" one-offer awards in Washington, DC.

Year-to-date, agencies report issuing more than $15.5 billion in competitive awards where the "Number of Offers Received" is equal to one. Based on assuming an error rate of fifty-percent to the dollars awarded that still leaves more than $7 billion in awards where only one-offer was apparently received.

I hope I'm not the only one that sees the potential opportunity.  


The Chief Visionary

"The person who says it cannot be done should not interrupt the person doing it."


*'Competitive' means: Competed Under SAP; Competitive Delivery Order;Full and Open Competition; and Full and Open Competition After Exclusion of Sources.

Tags:  ineffective competition  one-offer 

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