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Evaluation Risk Management

Posted 2/13/2021

Managing risk with RFx evaluations begins with the drafting of the RFx. This means that if you intend to evaluate a factor, it must be clear in the RFx

that you intend to evaluate it. This applies to the secondary criteria as well as the primary criteria. At a minimum, the weighting to be applied to each of the primary criteria must be disclosed. The evaluation process should also be disclosed in reasonable terms.

When I draft RFx documents, I structure the form of response in a manner that can be easily incorporated into the evaluation workbook.

Then there is process transparency. Many organizations are now receiving bids by e-mail. There should be a “firewall” mail receipt system that preserves the integrity of a sealed bid to ensure that bids are not opened before closing.

This is what I recommend to my clients:

Before the RFx closes:

  • ·        Identify who will be evaluating responses and ensure they understand their role and responsibilities
  • ·        Require all involved to complete and sign a non-disclosure document
  • ·        Ensure the evaluation workbook is reconciled to the RFx
  • ·        “Lock down” the evaluation workbook, no changes after closing

Post Close:

  • ·        Have all involved in the evaluation complete a relationship disclosure / conflict of interest form
  • ·        Evaluators independently perform their evaluations and submit to the facilitator
  • ·        Evaluators meet, discuss with emphasis on larger variances in criterion scoring and agree on the scores with a recommendation to award
  • ·        All documents are retained, de-briefings provided on request

Strict adherence to full disclosure, transparency, process documentation, and document retention will serve to minimize procurement risk.