The General Services Administration is exploring how it can add more transparency to the procurement process, particularly with its $35 billion schedules program.
Since its inception, GSA’s schedules program has been hidden behind a wall where only vendors with a contract could see the solicitations and awards. The lack of transparency about what happens on those “members-only” contracts has frustrated good government groups, the media and vendors who aren’t on the contracts, but may want to join.
So GSA Administrator Emily Murphy, who was confirmed by the Senate about two months ago, has made transparency one of her four goals and is seeking not just an agency solution to this challenge, but one that would work governmentwide. Reference Article
he Federal Supply Schedules — the government’s large catalog of contracts that generates tens of billions of dollars worth of federal purchases — appears likely to see major revisions in the months ahead.
“Our GSA Schedule Award will enable GovPartners to offer complete acquisition and program management solutions to the government market worldwide,” stated Cynthia Karnik, President. Our convenient location in the Washington, DC metro area has enabled us to indirectly provide government support services as a subcontractor and service provider for over three (3) years, and with our recently awarded GSA Schedule; we look forward to working directly with numerous government agencies and their customers.”
Last year, the federal government spent more than $40 billion through the GSA Schedules program. This year it may well spend even more. A GSA Schedule contract is, quite simply, the easiest point-of-entry into government contracting – the most effective way to get your products or services in front of the world's largest buyer of products and services.
A GSA Schedules contract gives you access to more than 260 federal, state and local government buyers who have an easier time buying from you than they do your competition.
If you know that, you've already applied, or you're planning to.
After all, it seems hard to fail once you have that contract in hand. Yet a remarkable number of companies do just that.
That's not just a one-time missed opportunity. It can mean the end of future opportunities as well. The GSA requires schedule-holders to do at least $25,000 worth of business through their contract in the first two years they hold it, and another $25,000 every year thereafter. Fall short of that number, and they may terminate your contract. Full article.
Let’s make this clear: The price reduction clause is forever.
The General Services Administration couldn't endure giving up the clause that goes hand-in-hand with its Multiple Award Schedules contracts.
Officials say the clause guarantees that companies don’t overcharge the government. It's intended to ensure that the government gets a price as good as, if not better than, a company’s commercial clients for what’s being sold on the schedules. If a company lowers a price for a client, it has to give the government that price or better. Otherwise, it faces the consequences.
The clause causes headaches for companies and customers, yet officials cannot part with it.
“Because the pricing clause is a mechanism GSA uses to ensure the government is getting at least as good a price as a contractor’s private-sector clients, it is not feasible to change the collection process,” GSA officials wrote in their new report on reviewing the agency’s regulations.
The White House-ordered review of regulations had officials from all agencies hunting for ways to revoke some of their rules, which continue to pile up higher and higher on companies each year. Read full article.