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Specifically, TEG contends that the agency did not determine whether the submitted past performance references of these offerors were relevant and permitted these offerors to provide less than the required number of references. The critical question is whether the evaluation was conducted fairly, reasonably, and in accordance with the solicitations evaluation scheme, and whether it was based on relevant information sufficient to make a reasonable determination of the offerors past performance. An agency is required to consider, determine and document the similarity and relevance of an offerors past performance information as part of its past performance evaluation. For example, as to the relevance of Blue Laws past performance, the evaluation documentation only states: Blue Law identified their relevant past performance and was rated Exceptional by two, Excellent by six, and Good by one of their Past Performance Surveys submitted by Contracting Officers that have worked directly with them.

As a general matter, the evaluation of an offerors past performance, including the agencys determination of the relevance and scope of an offerors performance history to be considered, is a matter within the discretion of the contracting agency, and we will not substitute our judgment for reasonably based past performance ratings. 25, 2010, 2010 CPD 81 at 10; Yang Enters., Inc., Santa Barbara Applied Research, Inc, B-294605.4 et al., April 1, 2005, 2005 CPD 65 at 5. AR, Tab 10b, Post Discussion Consensus Report, at 15.

In most instances the agency evaluators agreed with each other about the number of screen selections needed to reach the desired information for each of the required items. The agency argues that the evaluators agreed to the methodology for counting screen selections prior to conducting the product demonstrations.

AR, Tab 9, Evaluator Worksheets, May 16, 2014, at 1-30. Swets asserts that the agencys evaluation of Swets screen selections was inaccurate and unreasonably high. Swets also provided screen-by-screen walkthroughs for demonstration item c for Lexi-Comp (three screen selections as compared to the VAs count of six screen selections), and for demonstration item l for F&C (three screen selections as compared to the VAs count of six screen selections). In this regard, the agency states, in its response to the protest, that the evaluators counted the number of screen selections as each screen was being clicked on and counted transitioning to the next screen, which included all drop‑down menus and sub-menus. 11, 2014, at 4; AR, Tab 12, Declaration of VA Evaluator J. Thus, the agency asserts that the evaluators accurately counted vendors screen selections based on this established methodology.

In sum, the contemporaneous record does not include any information to support the conclusion that the agency, in making its source selection decision, performed a meaningful, qualitative assessment or critical, comparative analysis of the proposals under the technical evaluation factor or its enumerated elements.

Against this backdrop, the record shows that there were substantial differences in the proposed staffing offered by M7 and DS2.

As noted above, the TEP final consensus evaluation report merely states that the TEP accepted that the offeror corrected the weakness and the ranking was changed to Excellent without providing additional explanation.In this regard, Clark/F-P notes that the TEP did not identify any further strengths in Harberts proposal as a result of the firms proposal revisions. As the State Department correctly notes, the evaluation of proposals and assignment of adjectival ratings should generally not be based upon a simple count of strengths and weaknesses, but on a qualitative assessment of the proposals consistent with the evaluation scheme. See FAR 4.801(b), 15.305(a), 15.308; Century Envtl.The State Department responds that Harbert provided comprehensive explanations in its revised proposal that corresponded to each of the identified weaknesses, and that the TEP reasonably increased Harberts proposal ratings to reflect that there were no weaknesses in its revised proposal. Hygiene, Inc., B-279378, June 5, 1998, 98-1 CPD 164 at 4.In this regard, the record contains conflicting evidence, statements, and exhibits concerning how the VA conducted its evaluation. An agency which fails to adequately document the rationale for its source selection, bears the risk that its determinations will be considered unsupported, and that absent such support, our Office may lack a basis to find that the agency had a reasonable basis for its determinations. AR, Tab 13, Declaration of VA Demonstration Facilitator, Oct. A separate audio line was also established so that the agency evaluators and vendors could communicate during the demonstration. For each of the required product demonstration items, the agency evaluators instructed the vendor representatives to start from the home screen and navigate to the screen containing the required information. A Swets representative demonstrated the ability of the Lexi-Comp and F&C products to search for and reach the information required for each of the demonstration items.As the agency failed to maintain an evaluation record adequate to permit meaningful review, and has failed to rebut persuasive evidence presented by the protester about the number of screen selections required to demonstrate the effectiveness of Swets alternative databases, we sustain the protest. Tiger Enters., Inc., B‑293951, July 26, 2004, 2004 CPD 141 at 2. Protest, July 11, 2014, Declaration of Swets Government Contracts Director, July 11, 2014, at 3. The VA and Swets agree, however, that the agency evaluators did not state their count of the number of screen selections that it took in each instance to reach the required information.

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