In Dynamic Systems Technology, Inc. B-400655, B-400655.2, B-400655.3 (Comp. Gen. Dec. 15, 2008), the Government Accountability Office (GAO) upheld the Department of Education’s (DOE) award of a task order under a Request For Quotations (RFQ) to assist the Federal Student Aid Office (FSA) in its use of the Rational suite of software tools for systems development efforts and infrastructure projects. Dynamic was one of three vendors who submitted quotations to the DOE. The DOE issued the task order to Trinity Software Solutions, Inc. (Trinity), despite the fact that Trinity’s quotation was over $1.7 million more than Dynamic’s proposal. Dynamic, in turn, protested the award to Trinity.
In its protest, Dynamic argued that the DOE had “unreasonably evaluated” both its and Trinity’s quotations. In concluding that the DOE had not unreasonably evaluated either quotation, the GAO explained, “In reviewing a protest against an agency’s evaluation, our role is limited to ensuring that the evaluation was reasonable and consistent with the terms of the solicitation and applicable statutes and regulations.”
With respect to Dynamic’s protest, the GAO held that the DOE had reasonably evaluated Dynamic’s quotation in light of the fact that Dynamic had failed to comply with several RFQ requirements. Further, the GAO did not find fault with the fact that a DOE held exchanges with Trinity, and not Dynamic, while the quotations were still being evaluated because, when the exchanges occurred, the contracting officer was aware that the panel had completed its evaluation and concluded that Dynamic’s quotation was unacceptable and considered ineligible for award.