On October 24, GSA introduced Phase 2 of its Making It Easier (MIE) initiative. MIE was originally launched in April 2016 to address several challenges around its Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) program. The second phase adds numerous new efforts for both the contracting community and federal agencies. They include new quick start guides, designed to prepare prospective contractors as they seek business across GSA’s many acquisition vehicles; a MAS Modification Improvement process, designed to streamline changes in schedule solicitations; and restructured help desks, housed on the Acquisition Gateway, that will give customers a single point of entry.
In a webinar to discuss its Transactional Data Reporting (TDR) pilot program, GSA announced tentative dates for the issuance of the mass modification (A509) to implement the pilot program for affected schedules. As discussed in Aronson’s previous blog, schedule holders who participate in the TDR pilot will be required to provide monthly contract sales reports, including prices paid information, to serve as the basis for pricing negotiations. In exchange, GSA will eliminate the requirements for those contractors to provide Commercial Sales Practices (CSP) and track commercial prices to a Basis of Award customer for price reductions. The following dates are subject to change:
Acceptance of this mass mod is OPTIONAL during the pilot, unless the GSA contract renews during the pilot period. Contractors must respond to the mass mod whether they plan to enroll in the pilot or not by accepting or declining the mod.
Transactional data must be reported monthly. IFF remittance is still required quarterly, although contractors participating in the pilot now have the option to remit IFF monthly. If and when contractors accept the TDR pilot program mass mod, transactional data reporting will be required at the start of the next calendar quarter. This quarterly timeframe will allow for a smoother reporting transition from the 72a Quarterly Reporting System to the new FAS Sales Reporting system.
Contractors can register for the third GSA-hosted webinar on TDR held on Tuesday, August 23 here. Please contact Barbara Connell (240-364-2657, email@example.com) or Jennifer Aubel (301-231-6253, firstname.lastname@example.org) if you have any specific questions about this significant change or other GSA Schedule compliance matters.
GSA is making changes to its IT70 GSA schedule guidelines that ease requirements regarding corporate experience, relevant projects, and submission of audited financial documentation for innovative start-up companies who have been in business for less than two years. This initiative will eliminate the 2-year corporate experience requirement and reduce barriers for emerging companies looking to obtain access to the $15B GSA IT Schedule 70 Contract market.
GSA will allow companies with less than two years of corporate experience to:
GSA has been keeping abreast of the latest technology trends in order to meet the evolving needs of its customer agencies. One of the most important technology trends right now is cloud computing – the director of GSA’s Cloud Computing Services Program Management Office, Stan Kaczmarczyk, estimates in Federal Computer Weekly that the federal cloud market will surpass $2.25B by FY17. In response to growing demand, GSA dedicated a Special Item Number (SIN) for cloud services on IT Schedule 70 in April 2015. The new cloud SIN (132-40) offers a clear path to acquire cloud services by giving buyers the ability to more easily differentiate between cloud technologies and buy what they need.
In June 2015, the General Services Administration (GSA) rolled out AdvantageSelect, a new service within its online ordering system, GSA Advantage!. An August 28 GSA Interact blog post summarizes: “AdvantageSelect draws concepts from category management, agile development, acquisition streamlining, and world class practices from Government and industry and is a game changing initiative for federal buyers. From this portal, a contracting officer or purchase card holder need only enter the quantity they require, and can proceed straight to check-out — so buying a commodity is finally as easy as click and pay. GSA has done the work for you by competing these items up front, applying category management principles and utilizing our latest procurement tools.”