Sealed Bids vs. Competitive Proposals

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Tiffany Tanner
Strayer University
BUS 315: Cost And Price Analysis
Professor Latimore
OCTOBER 24, 2012

This paper will explore how Sealed Bidding and Competitive proposals compare against each other. In order to compare them one must understand how, when and why each topic is used. The primary source of federal procurement information and guidance is the Federal Acquisition Regulation, which consists of Parts 1-53 of Title 48 of the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR). FAR parts 14 and 15 explains in full detail Sealed Bidding and Competitive Proposals. This paper like the federal government will rely heavily on the FAR as a source document to help explain the details of this topic.

Sealed Bidding VS. Competitive Proposals

The federal acquisition process begins when an agency determine that a requirement is needed and requires that requirement to become procured. If the agency’s contracting officer determines that the appropriate method for procuring the goods or services is a contract, and the contract amount is greater than $25,000, then the agency posts a solicitation on the Federal Business Opportunities (FedBizOpps) website. A solicitation identifies what an agency wants to buy, provides instructions to future offerors, identifies the source selection method that will be used to evaluate offers, and includes a deadline for the submission of bids or proposals . Following the deadline for companies to submit their offers, agency personnel evaluate offerors’ submissions, using the source selection method and criteria described in the solicitation. Unless multiple suppliers or firms are needed, such as for a supply schedule, the agency awards a contract to one firm. Two of the most basic procurement methods that are used are sealed bids and competitive proposals.

Sealed bids are usually used to procure high-end items with easy identifiable requirements. If this is the cases, the government...
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