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The protester said it should’ve received more strengths. It complained the agency had not documented why the protester’s approach merely met but did not exceed the solicitation’s requirements. But GAO opined an agency is not required to document mere determinations of adequacy. 

IAP- C4ISR, LLC, GAO B-421726.2 et al. 
  • Retransmission Device – The solicitation sought services for an internet protocol network. The solicitation required offerors to propose a radiotransmission device. The protester argued the awardee’s device was noncompliant. The protester said the device had to be separate from a laptop. The awardee’s device was in a laptop. But GAO reviewed the solicitation and found it did not require the device to be separate from a laptop. 
  •  Strengths – The protester thought it should have received additional strengths. The protester complained there was no contemporaneous record explaining why the agency found its approach met but did not exceed requirements. GAO, however, noted an agency is only required to document strengths, weaknesses, and deficiencies. An agency need not document determinations of adequacy or explain why it did not award a strength. 
  • Cost Realism – The protester argued the agency did not conduct a cost realism analysis of the awardee’s direct labor rates. But the record showed the agency verified the awardee’s salary information. The protester had not identified any specific rate that was understated or why the agency’s methods were improper. Without more, GAO would not question the evaluation. 
  • Discussions – The protester opined the awardee’s fixed-price CLINs were so much lower than the protester’s that the agency must have found the protester’s price significantly overstated. The protester contended the agency should have raised the overstated price during discussions. But the agency had not found the protester’s price excessive. Indeed, the agency found the price was reasonable relative to its approach. Because the price was not a weakness or deficiency, the agency did not need to raise the issue during discussions. 

The protester is represented by Stuart W. Turner and Michael D. McGill of Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer, LLP. The awardee is represented by Jamie F. Tabb, Tyler E. Robinson, and Leslie Edelstein of Vinson & Elkins LLP. The agency is represented by Maurice Griffithe and Colleen M. Eagan of the Defense Information Systems Agency. GAO attorneys Emily R. O’Hara and Peter H. Tran participated in the decision. 

–Case summary by Craig LaChance, Senior Editor