The scourge of many professional service providers is the lowest priced technically acceptable (LPTA) source selection process. FAR 15.101-2 address LPTA source selection.

Product vendors, especially those acted as resellers of widely available products, should understand that nearly all of their federal opportunities will be price sensitive and value will likely not be considered. The occasional exceptions may be when the end-product is not specifically known and only general specifications can be provided; for example, a server cabinet or document management software without a specific brand requested.

For complex professional services or solutions, understand the situation when LPTA may be used. LPTA is only appropriate when the lowest price is also expected to be the best value. Under LPTA, tradeoffs are not permitted, and evaluations are evaluated but not ranked; so, don’t expect much more information that the winners bid in a debriefing.

Recently, John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 made sweeping federal changes that limit the use of LPTA, especially on complex professional and IT solutions. See our blog here.

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