The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Tennessee County Municipal Advisory Service

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Qualification Based Selection Process

Reference Number: MTAS-760
Tennessee Code Annotated
Reviewed Date: March 22, 2017
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The purpose of this section is to present a simple, step-by-step procedure to help Tennessee municipal officials procure engineering, architectural, land surveying and other professional services. This guide promotes the qualifications-based selection (QBS) process. QBS is an equitable, rational, objective process that enables the city to obtain the services of a highly-qualified professional at a fair and reasonable cost. By using the QBS process, a city chooses to base consultant selection on qualifications. The quality of engineering services may lead to lower overall life cycle costs for the project.

When initiating a project, all owners—whether municipalities, private companies, or institutions—and the design professionals with whom they contract, seek the same results: a completed project that meets the owner’s short-term and long-term needs, is completed on schedule and stays within budget. Following an organized process for selecting and procuring professional services will help both the owner and the design professional achieve these results.

Procuring professional services is both an objective and a subjective process. The following provides guidance for the process and discusses the following nine essential steps. Sample documents and forms for procuring professional services are provided.

Step 1: Define the Project

Step 2: Form the Selection Committee and Define Tasks

Step 3: Solicit Statements of Qualification

Step 4: Evaluate Statements of Qualification

Step 5: Notify Firms of Results and Conduct Site Visits

Step 6: Interview Short-Listed Firms

Step 7: Rank the Firms

Step 8: Negotiate the Contract

Step 9: Manage the Contract

Author Note: This section was originally intended to be reviewed in its entirety and may be easier to use as a printed PDF. Click on the "View PDF of Section" to create a printable PDF file.

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