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Rating Oral Presentations

By Robert Talyor on Monday, December 03, 2001 - 03:45 pm:

A RFP has been issued and shortlisted. We are now preparing for the Oral Presentations. My question is how should the firms be rated numerical or excellent, good, fair and poor and why? This is my first time ever participating in Oral Presentations.

Thank you for your immediate response.

By joel hoffman on Monday, December 03, 2001 - 05:02 pm:

Are we to assume that there isn't a source selection plan, evaluation criteria and/or anything in the RFP describing this portion of the evaluation? If so, you may have a problem.

At any rate, you should determine why the Government is conducting oral presentations, develop your evaluation objectives - what you intend to use the orals for - then establish evaluation criteria and a rating system.

Do you intend to perform a comparative rating system or a go/no go evaluation? Do you expect variations in the offerors' capabilities or presentations? Or are you interested in assuring yourselves that the offeror understands the requirement or has minimum qualifications, etc.?

You should establish criteria for a satisfactory rating, whether using a comparative or go/no-go scheme. Then establish criteria for ratings above and below satisfactory, for a comparative system, and below satisfactory, for a go/no-go system.

It isn't possible to properly answer your questions without further information. however, I hope the above is helpful to you. happy sails! joel

By Anonymous on Monday, December 03, 2001 - 06:43 pm:

You are in trouble if you are government and do not have a plan for evaluating an RFP that is now drawing offers!

By Anon2Soon on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 - 12:36 am:

I am going to assume that you do have a plan, but the actual details of the oral presentation rating system have not been completely worked out. This is ok, as long as the ratings are based on the criteria outlined in the RFP. Your question, (which seems to have slipped through the readings of the previous respondents), is merely should you have a verbal or a numerical rating. This is up to you. A numerical seems more objective, but for some people, the text has a better conection. Whichever you choose, it needs to be spelled out so that all raters are working off the same pallette.

As for Joel's concern for a comparitive or a go/nogo rating, there is a third option: combination of the 2. I have had some areas where below a certain point is a nogo, but above that point, and the other areas being considered, get comparitive rankings.

By Vern Edwards on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 - 04:11 am:

If what you are asking is whether you should use numbers or adjectives to score the oral presentations, the answer is that you should use whichever system you are most comfortable with.

By Robert Taylor on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 - 11:49 am:

Thanks Vern. Sorry that it was confusing to some. We are in compliance with the RFP and when we notified the shortlist. We incoroporated the questions that will be asked during the presentation. I was concerned because the Senior Buyer suggested the adjectives to score and my supervisor wanted the numerical rating. He wants to rate them on the average. Again thanks to all of you for your help.

By Dave Barnett on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 - 02:13 pm:

Whether you use numerical or adjectival ratings, the accompanying narratives detailing strengths and weaknesses is by far the more important aspect when ranking the proposals.

By joel hoffman on Tuesday, December 04, 2001 - 05:23 pm:

Robert, after I posted my response, I wondered if you were simply wondering whether the rating scheme should be numerical or adjectival. You confirmed that. I agree with Vern and Dave.

The rating, itself, should simply be the result of the meat of the evaluation, which is the narrative, describing the weaknesses, strengths, deficiencies, or otherwise objectionable aspects of the oral proposal, in relation to the evaluation criteria.

The underlying narrative is the heart of the rating. In theory, it shouldn't matter whether you use a score or adjectival rating.

As an aside, if you are an Army activity, AFARS now prohibits numerical scoring systems. This is presumably because of abuses, exposed during protests. Activities were placing too much precision on the comparative raw scores in the tradeoff deliberations, and ignoring or otherwise understressing the actual, relative advantages and disadvantages between proposals.

The actual scores should only be an indicator of comparisons between proposals. I maintain that one cannot determine the best proposal or accurately rank order proposals, simply by comparing scores, unless there is a relatively large difference between scores, determined using sound narrative documentation.

hope this helps you. happy sails! joel