Established in July 1949, the General Services Administration (GSA), President Harry Truman sought to streamline the volume of administrative work of the federal government. Today, GSA is the central procurement portal for the federal government, managing the Federal Supply Schedules program. This federal program is more commonly referred to as the GSA Schedules.
The GSA Schedules is a massive purchasing vehicle offering more than 12 million commercial supplies and services open to all federal agencies within the Executive Branch of government. There are currently 24 Schedules offering commercial goods and services directly managed by the GSA. There are an additional eight federal supply schedules managed by the Department of Veterans Affairs. The GSA is one of few self-agencies in the federal government. The agencies revenue is based on a fixed fee associated with the Schedules and the GSA’s other Government-wide Acquisition Vehicles (GWACs).
The GSA executed an initiative in 2015, to consolidate seven professional services schedules into one single schedule known today as 00CORP. With the introduction of 00CORP, this simplified all federal acquisitions of professional services by a reduction in purchases needed to obtain a total solution. Additionally, this change resulted in eliminating the requirement for contractors to maintain multiple professional services schedule contracts in order to offer a total solution.
The Next Big Change
The GSA had made an announcement in November of 2018 that it will be renovating the schedules program by consolidating the agency’s existing 24 schedules into one single schedule. On October 1st, 2019, GSA released a solicitation replacing the 24 previous solicitations in an effort to create a more efficient and effective acquisitions solution across the federal government.
In June 2019, a Request for Information was released by GSA in order to obtain feedback from vendors regarding the new solicitation, organized by category to eliminate duplication of SINs across current existing solicitations. MAS Program Management Office Director, Stephanie Shutt assured all that with the new solicitation, new terms and conditions would not be introduced and only duplication's would be eliminated. It should be known though that any SIN specific clauses will continue to apply to the new respective SIN replacing it. This includes for example, small business set-asides, State/Local government Cooperative Purchasing Agreement, or SIN specific industrial funding fees.
What’s Up Next
As of October 1st, 2019, all new offers and modifications will need to reference the new solicitation. Vendors will be given an opportunity now to add SINs that were previously located on separate schedules and will also have the chance to consolidate multiple contracts into one contract.
Beginning in January 2020, all current contractors will receive a mass modification to accept the new solicitation. Each company must accept all mass mods for every contract currently held. Contract number, period of performance and contracting officer will not be changing. All SINs will be converting to the new format using NAICS codes as the supporting process in the naming convention.
Though this consolidation of schedules is a massive undertaking to help simplify the federal acquisitions process for consumers, there is an underlying concern about Small Business Participation on the Schedule program and how Small Businesses will weather the change. The GSA provided a Consolidation Determination document citing a positive outlook for small business participation, only time will tell how the consolidation will truly impact small businesses ability to compete. As of now, consolidation is the new wave of what vendors and federal buyers can expect, it is not the only change taking place of note. Recently, GSA created the FAS Sales Reporting Portal, replacing 72A, TDR and CAF. GSA is now assisting with the SAM consolidation.
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