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Air Force Source Selection


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Title: Air Force Source Selection

Air Force Source Selection
2009 NCMA Workshop
  • 11 March 2009

Integrity ? Service ? Excellence
  • Recent Source Selection Policy Changes
  • Air Force FAR Supplement (AFFARS) Changes
  • Air Force Material Command FAR (AFMCFAR) Changes
  • Recent Trends in GAO Protests
  • GAO Statistics
  • DoD Statistics
  • Lessons Learned
  • Other Topics affecting USAF Source Selections
  • Acquisition Category (ACAT) I Programs
  • Multi-Functional Independent Review Team (MIRT)
  • Past Performance Alternate Methods (PPAM)
  • Organizational Conflict of Interest (OCI)
  • Summary


  • AFFARS Policy Changes

AFFARS Policy Changes
  • AFAC 2008-0128, effective 31 Mar 08, implemented
    revised AFFARS Mandatory Procedures (MP) 5315.3
    Source Selection
  • All source selection plans approved on or after
    31 Mar 08 must comply with the revised procedures
  • Compliance with the revised procedures is
    optional for source selection plans approved
    before 31 Mar 08
  • Main Focus of the changes
  • Factors and Ratings
  • Definitions
  • Planning
  • Use of Non-Government Advisors
  • Notification Requirement
  • Other

Factors Mission Capability
  • Past Two factors
  • Mission Capability (MC) - assessed offerors
    capability to meet Government requirements, at
    the subfactor level if applicable
  • Proposal Risk -assessed the risk of the offerors
    proposed approach, using the same subfactors as
  • Present One factor with two assessments, at the
    subfactor level if applicable AFFARS MP5315.3,
    Para and 5.5.1
  • Mission Capability Technical -assesses offerors
    capability to meet the governments requirements
  • Mission Capability Risk -assesses the risk of the
    offerors proposed approach
  • Two ratings are presented together and have equal
  • Reflects the current practice of looking at the
    risk associated with the technical approach of
    the item or service being proposed
  • Additionally, incorporated the option to use plus
    ratings for additional stratification within
    the risk ratings

Mission Capability Technical Ratings
Through discussions, the government evaluators
should obtain the necessary information from
offerors with interim Yellow/Marginal ratings to
resolve outstanding issues within the offer.
Yellow/Marginal ratings should be rare by the
time of the final evaluation.
Mission Capability Risk Ratings
A may be used when risk is in the upper
boundaries of a Mission Capabilities Risk Rating
but not enough to merit the next inferior rating
Factors Past Performance
  • Reduced Performance Confidence ratings from six
    to five AFFARS MP5315.3, Table 3
  • Combined significant and high ratings into
    Substantial rating as the most advantageous
  • Removes the duplication and confusion with the
    High risk rating (less advantageous)
  • Adopted a Limited rating
  • Separated Unknown confidence rating from the
    other ratings
  • Broadened the description to include an offeror
    with a sparse record can receive an
    unknown/neutral rating

Factors Past Performance
  • Removed the requirement for Past Performance to
    be as important as the most important non-cost
  • Teams can now determine the relative importance
    of each of the evaluation factors based on the
    specifics of their source selection

Past Performance Ratings
Factors Cost/Price Risk
  • Elevated Cost/Price Risk to a separate factor
    (moved from within the Cost/Price evaluation
  • Only required on ACAT System Development and
    Demonstration (SDD) phase programs using a Most
    Probable Cost (Cost Reimbursement or Fixed-Priced
    Incentive type contract)
  • With SSA approval, it may also be used on
    non-ACAT acquisitions using Most Probable Cost
  • For ACAT I programs, the MPC must also include an
    Uncertainty Analysis
  • Must discuss, prior to RFP release (Market
    Research, Industry Day, Draft RFP) general
    methods/tools that will be used to develop the

Factors Cost/Price Risk (cont)
  • The rating assesses the degree to which an
    Offerors cost proposal compares with the
    Government developed MPC
  • When used, Cost/Price Risk shall be a significant
  • The purpose of this risk rating is to provide
    information to the SSA that allows selection of
    an offeror who proposed a rational and realistic
    cost for the work to be accomplished

Cost/Price Risk Ratings
Source Selection Evaluation Matrix
Cost/Price Risk
Mission Capability
Mission Capability
Subfactor 1
Subfactor 3
Subfactor 2
Subfactor 1
Subfactor 2
Subfactor 3
Proposal Risk
Risk Rating
Risk Rating
Risk Rating
Technical Rating
Technical Rating
Technical Rating
Past Performance
Past Performance
Cost/Price This factor may require a risk
assessment as described in Paragraph 5.5.4.
For use on cost reimbursement or fixed-price
incentive contracts where Cost/Price Risk is an
Evaluation Factor Most Probable Cost is utilized
Uncertainty Definition
  • Added definition Uncertainty is a doubt
    regarding whether an aspect of the proposal meets
    a material performance or capability requirement
    AFFARS MP5315.3, Para 8.16
  • Definition is attached to the Yellow (Marginal)
    Mission Capability Technical Rating - not the
    uncertainty analysis in the ACAT I Cost/Price
  • It requires additional information from the
    offeror to further explain the proposal before
    the evaluator can complete his/her review and
    analysis and should generate the issuance of an
    Evaluation Notice

Deficiency Definition
  • Withdraws AFFARS Deviation
  • Past AFFARS 5315.001 definition of Deficiency
    was A material failure of a proposal to meet a
    Government Requirement
  • Back to using FAR definition of deficiency
  • A material failure of a proposal to meet a
    Government requirement or a combination of
    significant weaknesses in a proposal that
    increases the risk of unsuccessful contract
    performance to an unacceptable level
  • AFFARS MP now uses the FAR definitions of
    Deficiency, Weakness, and Significant Weakness

  • Deviations to Part 15.3 (FAR, DFAR, AFFARS, and
    MPs) can now only be approved by the Senior
    Contracting Official (Individual) and SAF/AQC
    (Class) AFFARS 5301.4 and MP5301.4
  • New requirement to address the use of e-mails
    during the Source Selection process
  • If used, e-mails shall be encrypted and include
    in the subject line Source Selection Information
    See FAR 2.101 and 3.104
  • Now optional to include Section L with the Source
    Selection Plan (SSP)
  • Personnel changes to the Source Selection
    Evaluation Team, after SSP approval can be made
    with Source Selection Evaluation Team (SSET)
    Chairperson approval in an addendum to the SSP

Notification Requirement
  • Moved the notification requirement for source
    selections gt100M from AFFARS MP5315.3 to AFFARS
    and expanded the definition to require
    notification of all competitive negotiated
    actions gt100M
  • Now required for acquisitions using
  • Full Trade Off
  • Performance Price Tradeoff
  • Lowest Price Technically Acceptable
  • This notification has been an item of interest
    for SAF/AQC since July 2007
  • This information is provided on a regular basis
    at the SAF/HAF staff meetings.

  • AFMCFARS Changes

  • AFMCFARS consolidated the product centers,
    logistic centers, test centers, and AFRL source
    selection authority delegations into the AFMCFARS
  • Consolidated delegation table is at AFMCFARS
  • AFMC Guides and Templates have become Air Force
    Level Guides and Templates
  • Source Selection Plan
  • Section L
  • Section M
  • Oral Presentations
  • Proposal Analysis Report
  • Source Selection Decision Document

  • Recent Trends in GAO Protests

Task Order Protests
  • The pool of actions that can be protested has
  • Past federal law prohibited protest of a
    task/delivery order except for protests based on
    the grounds …that the order increases the scope,
    period, or maximum value of the contract under
    which the order is issued.
  • 2008 National Defense Authorization Act expands
    this exception and gives GAO jurisdiction over
    any protest of an order valued in excess of 10M
  • Effective end of May 2008, and continues in
    effect for 3 years

GAO Bid Protest Statistics FY 04-08
Source Excerpt from GAO Report B-158766,
December 22, 2008
NOTE GAO has published a listing of significant
bid protest decisions on its website related to
evaluations, competitive range, discussions, etc.
DoD Protest Statistics FY 04-08 GAO Sustained
Protest Filings
Note DoD Calculates sustain rate differently
from GAO
Source Information Memo from USD (ATL) January
13, 2009
Protest Lessons Learned
  • Always, always ensure that your evaluations are
    based on your evaluation criteria in your Section
  • If your criteria or methods change, Amend your
    Section M and allow revised proposals
  • Everyone in the Competitive Range gets to be part
    of the Discussion Process
  • Meaningful discussions must be held with all
    offerors in the competitive range

Protest Lessons Learned (cont)
  • Documentation is critical
  • Evaluation worksheets, summaries, briefing
    charts, analysis report, and decision document
    must be complete and consistent
  • Address minority opinions
  • Ensure judgments/ratings are well documented and
    include the merit of differing approaches
  • Consider Relevance of past performance efforts in
    determining the past performance confidence


  • Acquisition Category (ACAT I) Programs

ACAT I Programs
  • Two recent policy changes affecting ACAT I
    programs in the Air Force
  • SAF/AQC Policy Memo 08-C-08 3 Oct 2008 requires
    SAF/AQ approval of the Source Selection
    Evaluation Team Chairperson and the Contracting
    Officer for ACAT I competitive acquisitions
  • SAF/AQC Policy Memo 08-C-10 3 Oct 2008 allows
    SAF/AQC, at his discretion, to assume Clearance
    Approval responsibilities for ACAT I programs
  • Both these changes allow for greater oversight
    of ACAT I source selections

Multi-Functional Independent Review Team (MIRT)
  • Established by Air Force Deputy Assistant
    Secretary (Contracting) Policy Memo 08-C-15,
    November 28, 2008
  • Required for all competitive actions where
    contract values are 50M or more (including task
    orders against multiple award ID/IQ)
  • Intended to be part of an independent and
    objective clearance process to review and assess
    Critical Decision Points (CDPs) within the
    business and contract clearance process
  • MIRT will have representation from technical,
    legal, and contracting functions

MIRT Critical Decision Points (CDPs)
  • MIRT Mandatory CDPs
  • Pre-Business Clearance CDP
  • Review Draft Acquisition Strategy Brief
  • Review Sections L and M of RFP
  • Pre-Contract Clearance CDP
  • Review of draft Competitive Range brief or Award
    without Discussions brief
  • Review of draft Final Proposal Revision brief
  • Review of draft Source Selection Decision brief
  • MIRT Areas of Special Interest (ASI)
  • MIRT may review source selection plans, model
    contracts, debriefing charts, etc

Past Performance Alternate Methods (PPAM)
  • Team chartered by Mr Charlie Williams (SAF/AQC)
    in September 2007
  • Responsible to look at techniques that may be
    used for past performance evaluations for non
    ACAT acquisitions or less complex acquisitions
  • Attempt to make past performance evaluations less
    labor intensive/complex
  • Revisions to the Air Force Past Performance
    Evaluation Guide expected July 2009

Organizational Conflict of Interest (OCI)
  • FAR 2.101 Definition Organizational conflict of
    interest means that because of other activities
    or relationships …
  • …a person is unable or potentially unable to
    render impartial assistance or advice to the
    Government, or
  • …the person's objectivity in performing the
    contract work is or might be otherwise impaired,
  • …a person has an unfair competitive advantage.
  • OCI issues must be addressed internally (do our
    evaluators have OCI issues) and externally (does
    the offeror have OCI issues)

OCI (cont)
  • OCI issues becoming more and more critical as we
    use more and more AAS support in our day to day
  • OCI issues are valid grounds for protest
  • Not just an issue in the Air Force
  • GAO Report 08-169 March 2008
  • Indications are that significant numbers of
    defense contractor employees work alongside DOD
    employees in the 21 DOD offices GAO reviewed. At
    15 offices, contractor employees outnumbered DOD
    employees and comprised up to 88 percent of the
    workforce. Contractor employees perform key
    tasks, including developing contract requirements
    and advising on award fees for other
  • Address OCI Early and Often even prior to
    proposal receipt


  • ALL Air Force source selections are under closer
    scrutiny right now because of recent GAO
  • CSAR-X
  • Tanker Replacement
  • DoD has established a Source Selection Joint
    Analysis Team (JAT) to look at standardizing the
    methodology and approach with which DoD conducts
    source selections.

  • AFFARS MP5301.9001(b) MIRT
  • AFFARS MP 5315.3 Source Selection December 2008
  • GAO Report B-158766, December 22, 2008
  • GAO Bid Protest Decision Page
  • Organizational Conflict of Interest Protest
    Decisions (FAR 9.500)

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