As part of my required continuing education, I recently attended a workshop at Public Contracting Institute (PCI) presented by Larry Allen of Allen Federal Business Partners. It was a good reminder of some key points about GSA Schedules and, as always, I learned a few things.
GSA Schedule Sales
- Overall, GSA schedule sales in FY 18 were about $35 Billion which is approximately the same amount in FY 17. Sales on the IT Schedule 70 and Professional Services Schedule (PSS) 00Corp increased in FY 18.
- Small Businesses make up 75% of the Schedule Contractors and obtain about 33% of Schedule sales.
- Solicitations posted on e-Buy meet the Fair Opportunity Act and there is no requirement about the number of proposals that must be received in order to win an award. [Suggestion from Larry] During August and September, monitor e-Buy closely as the Government spends end of the year money.
Proposals for Schedules and Awards based on Schedules
- Both according to Larry and from my experience, unlike most (if not all) there is sometimes (often?) inconsistency about how the Contracting Officer (CO) evaluating the Schedule proposal requests the pricing documentation.
- Know the Basis of Award (BOA) in which the pricing is based and keep it as simple as possible. (See Important Reminders).
• There may be more than one Final Proposal Revision (FPR) request from the government.
- There seems to be inconsistency about whether COs allow escalation within the five-year option period. The thought about not allowing the escalation within the five-year period is that the pricing that was the BOA may not be increasing. Therefore, GSA is getting over-charged.
- GSA Schedules are regulated by FAR Part 8. This means that companies are not entitled to a debriefing for task orders/purchase orders which is required under FAR Part 15.
- As mentioned earlier, know the BOA in which the pricing is based and keep it as simple as possible. This will help in not being as likely to trigger the Price Reductions Clause (PRC). And if the PRC is triggered, being on top of it to report it. Penalties can be stiff for not reporting it—including a fine of $11,000-$24,000 per invoice, possible criminal penalties, and other damages.
- Schedule items are subject to the Trade Agreement Act. Open Market items are subject to the Buy American Act.
- Do not pay the Industrial Funding Fee (IFF) on Open Market items. Despite over-paying, it causes confusion for GSA and therefore, is viewed negatively.
- Task Orders can be awarded on the last day of the GSA Schedule and still can be valid for up to 60 months.
- If you have a Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) under your GSA contract, awards can be issued on the BPA on the last date of validity, although services will be provided later. However, if the GSA Schedule expires, the BPA expires.
- BPAs must have equal or more favorable terms than the GSA Schedule.
GSA Schedules are of course very useful tools in obtaining Federal Government business. The important take-away is to know the rules and regulations.
Contact Streamline to help your company understand GSA Schedules.
This blog is for informational purposes only. None of the content is, or will be deemed to constitute legal opinions or legal advice.