5 Wing Goose Bay site support services

Fairness monitor final report, April 12, 2016

Addendum to final report, April 12, 2016

Submitted to Director, Fairness Monitoring Program

Submitted by Samson & Associates

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Introduction

Samson & Associates was engaged as a Fairness Monitor (FM) on May 4, 2015 to observe the competitive selection process for 5 Wing Goose Bay site support services, issued by Public Services and Procurement Canada (PSPC), on behalf of the Department of National Defence (DND) as a result of solicitation number W0123-15CE01. Samson & Associates is an independent third party with respect to this activity.

We reviewed all of the information provided, observed all relevant activities and had full access to all aspects of the procurement process, following our involvement after the Letter of Interest/Request for Information (LOI/RFI) phase had been initiated. We had the full co-operation from all stakeholders at DND and PSPC.

We hereby submit the final report, covering the activities of the FM commencing with the Industry Engagement Phase and continuing through to the evaluation phase of the request for proposal (RFP). Given the evaluation process taken, (refer to Annex J of the RFP), there are three closing dates to the RFP, one for each phase of the evaluation process. The closing of Phase I was on February 22, 2016; the closing of Phase II was on March 7, 2016; and the closing of Phase III was on March 14, 2016.

This report includes our attestation of assurance, a summary of the scope and objectives of our assignment, the methodologies applied and relevant observations from the activities undertaken.

2. Project requirements

5 Wing Goose Bay is a Canadian Armed Forces base located in Happy Valley/Goose Bay, Newfoundland & Labrador. DND has a requirement for the provision of site support services at the base. The services to be provided by a single Contractor include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  • Food services, roads and grounds maintenance, transportation services, communication services
  • Information technology (IT) services
  • Firefighting services
  • Air traffic control services
  • Vehicle and infrastructure maintenance services

The requirement also includes support to Department of National Defence activities, such as:

  • operation of the airfield
  • support to 444 Combat Support Squadron
  • North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD)
  • Canadian and Foreign Military Training, on an as and when required basis

The contractor will be responsible for all labour and equipment to provide these services. Types of equipment that must be provided by the Contractor include but will not be limited to: firefighting trucks and ancillary equipment, material handling equipment, roads and grounds vehicles and equipment and transportation vehicles including cars, buses, etc.

The contract is expected to be for a period of two years with two additional one-year options.

3. Attestation of assurance

The FM hereby provides the following unqualified assurance statement concerning the competitive selection process for 5 Wing Goose Bay site support services, commencing with the Industry Engagement Phase and continuing through to the evaluation phase of the request for proposal.

It is our professional opinion that the competitive selection process for the above activities we observed, was carried out in a fair, open and transparent manner.

Original signed by
Mathieu Farley, CPA, CA, CIA, CISA
FM Team Leader, Partner, Audit and Advisory Services
Samson & Associates

Original signed by
Yves Vaillancourt, MBA
FM Specialist

4. Methodology

Samson & Associates was engaged as a FM to observe the competitive selection process for 5 Wing Goose Bay site support services, and to attest to the fairness, openness and transparency of this monitored activity.

In accordance with the terms of our engagement, we familiarized ourselves with the relevant documents and activities (e.g. industry information, comments resulting from the draft RFP, the initial RFP, related amendments and disposition of questions and answers received during the process), identified fairness-related matters to the contracting authority and technical authority (when applicable), and ensured that responses and actions were reasonable and appropriate.

4.1 Fairness monitor activities and observations industry engagement phase

The Industry Engagement Phase was initiated through the issuance the LOI/RFI via buyandsell.gc.ca on February 12, 2015. The purpose of the LOI/RFI was to inform industry of DND's requirement for Support Services at 5 Wing Goose Bay. The FM reviewed the LOI/RFI document following its involvement and no fairness issues were noted.

Comments from industry were documented and considered for the preparation of the Solicitation of Interest and Qualification (SOIQ). The FM reviewed the comment disposition and no fairness issues were identified.

Fairness monitor summary of findings: It is the opinion of the FM that the Industry Engagement Phase, from the time of our involvement, was conducted in a fair manner. In this context, fairness refers to decisions being made objectively, free from bias, favouritism or influence and conform to established rules.

4.2 Fairness monitor activities and observations solicitation of interest and qualification phase

The LOI/SOIQ document was issued via buyandsell.gc.ca on October 19, 2015. The purpose of the SOIQ was to determine whether firms were available and qualified to bid, as well as to provide industry an opportunity to provide feedback on the requirement and subsequent engagement activities.

Questions from the potential bidders were accepted and answers were addressed and distributed via buyandsell.gc.ca prior to the closing date. The FM reviewed all questions and answers provided during the LOI/SOIQ period to ensure fairness-related considerations were satisfactorily addressed.

At the close of the SOIQ, seven (7) amendments were communicated as a result of questions from potential proponents and requested clarifications. The FM reviewed each amendment prior to its publication.

The FM reviewed the LOI/SOIQ Evaluation Plan and Terms of Reference, Evaluator and Consensus Scoring Sheets and Summaries. The evaluation of the bids was carried out through a review of the documentation provided by the bidders.

Bid evaluation was conducted on November 12, 2015. All evaluators were present for the duration of the consensus meetings, as was the contracting authority and the FM.

Fairness monitor summary of findings: It is the opinion of the FM that the LOI/SOIQ activities observed were conducted in a fair, open and transparent manner. In this context, fairness refers to decisions being made objectively, free from bias, favouritism or influence and conform to established rules.

4.3 Fairness monitor activities and observations request for proposals phase

The RFP W0123-15CE01/C was not posted via buyandsell.gc.ca but rather was issued directly to qualified bidders following the SOIQ Phase. The RFP and annexes were issued on December 23, 2015, and initially closed on February 22, 2016. As indicated, the RFP included three closing dates with proposal evaluation activities following each one:

  • Phase I closing date - February 22, 2016
  • Phase II closing date - March 7, 2016
  • Phase III closing date - March 14, 2016

Questions from the potential bidders were accepted and answers were addressed and distributed to each qualified bidders prior to the closing dates. The FM reviewed all questions and answers provided during the RFP period to ensure fairness-related considerations were satisfactorily addressed.

Prior to the publication of the RFP, an industry site visit was held in Goose Bay, Labrador from December 1 to 4, 2015, which the project authority, contracting authority and FM attended in person.

Observation: Questions arising during the RFP phase were handled in accordance with the terms of the RFP and responses were clear, understandable and communicated to all vendors in a timely fashion. All fairness considerations were satisfactorily addressed.

Fairness monitor summary of findings: It is the opinion of the FM that the RFP Phase was conducted in a fair manner. In this context, fairness refers to decisions being made objectively, free from bias, favouritism or influence and conformed to established rules.

4.4 Fairness monitor activities and observations request for proposals evaluation phase

The FM reviewed the evaluation plan and framework, scorecards and summary consensus of the evaluators. The evaluation of bids consisted of the review of the documentation submitted by the bidders for each of the three Phases of the technical evaluation process.

An information session for the technical evaluation teams attended by the contracting authority and the FM was held on February 24, 2016. The evaluation team was composed of four units of three subject-matter experts and one team lead for a total of 16 evaluators. The evaluation of the technical bids, Phase I, began on February 24, 2016. The four evaluation team leaders and the evaluation manager attended the consensus meetings along with the contracting authority and FM. The Phase I consensus meetings were completed on March 3, 2016. Observations were sent to the bidders on March 4, 2016.

The Phase II evaluation of the technical bids took place from March 14 to 17, 2016 inclusively. The four evaluation team leaders and the evaluation manager attended the consensus meetings along with the contracting authority and FM. The Phase II consensus meetings were completed on March 17, 2016. Observations were sent to the bidders on March 18, 2016.

The Phase III evaluation of the technical bids took place on March 23, 2016. The evaluation manager attended the consensus meetings along with the contracting authority and FM. The Phase III consensus meetings were completed on March 23, 2016.

Observation: The instructions and tools of the evaluators were complete, respected the terms of the RFP and were consistent with the principles and practices of fairness, and they were executed fairly. Evaluation criteria, weighting, points and passing notes complied fully with what had been established in the RFP. The evaluation was performed as described by the RFP. The scoring was performed in strict accordance with the criteria. Consensus discussions were open, and a consensus was reached for all the criteria.

5. Reference documents

The following documents referenced by number in this report and unless otherwise indicated, are available through PSPC.

Table summary

The following LOI table includes a list of documents referred to in the report such as the request for proposal (RFP), amendments, clarification letters, debriefing letters, etc. Each row is numbered, followed by the document title, then a document identifier such as a date or document number.

Solicitation document – Letter of interest
No. Solicitation document Date
1 LOI - W0123 – 15CE01/B  Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on October 20, 2015
2 Amendment 001 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on October 21, 2015
3 Amendment 002 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on October 23, 2015
4 Amendment 003 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on October 27, 2015
5 Amendment 004 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on October 28, 2015
6 Amendment 005 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on November 03, 2015
7 Amendment 006 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on November 05, 2015
8 Amendment 007 Published on buyandsell.gc.ca on November 05, 2015

The documents below (W0123-15-C01/C) were sent directly to qualified possible bidders.

Table summary

The following RFP table includes a list of documents referred to in the report such as the request for proposal (RFP), amendments, clarification letters, debriefing letters, etc. Each row is numbered, followed by the document title, then a document identifier such as a date or document number.

Solicitation document – Request for proposal
No. Solicitation document Date
1 RFP - W0123—15CE01/C AMD 001 Issued to possible bidders on December 23, 2015
2 Amendment 002—RFP & Annexes Issued to possible bidders on February 8, 2016
3 Amendment 003—Annex J Issued to possible bidders on February 17, 2016
4 Amendment 004—Annex M Issued to possible bidders on February 18, 2016

6. Addendum to Fairness Monitor final report, April 12, 2016 on the competitive selection process for 5 Wing Goose Bay site support services, issued by Public Services and Procurement Canada for the Department of National Defence

This Addendum to the FM Final Report covers the period following the conclusion of the evaluation phase.

Fairness monitor activities related to contract award and debriefings

There were two bids submitted in response to the request for proposal. The bidders were advised of the results and contract award on September 23, 2016.

Debriefing meetings were requested from both bidders following the communication of the results.

The debriefing meeting for the successful bidder was held in Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador on October 17, 2016 with representatives of DND (project authority) and PSPC (contracting authority). The FM and additional representatives from DND and PSPC also participated to the debriefing via teleconference from Ottawa, Ontario.

The debriefing for the unsuccessful bidder was held in Ottawa, Ontario, on October 24, 2016 with representatives of DND (project authority), PSPC (contracting authority) and the FM.

No FM issues were noted.

Fairness monitor attestation of assurance

The FM hereby provides the following unqualified assurance statement concerning the competitive selection process for 5 Wing Goose Bay site support services.

It is our professional opinion that the competitive selection process that we observed, was carried out in a fair, open and transparent manner.

Original signed by
Mathieu Farley, CPA, CA, CIA, CISA
FM Team Leader, Partner, Audit and Advisory Services
Samson & Associates

Original signed by
Yves Vaillancourt, MBA
FM Specialist

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