10 QUESTIONS TO ASK BEFORE TRYING TO GET A GSA SCHEDULE (and where to find the answers).

1. WHAT DO I NEED TO KNOW? Take advantage of Training. The General Services Administration (GSA) offers free onsite and web-based courses to help you obtain and usbusiness-man-2766703_1280e schedules.
2. WHAT ALTERNATIVES ARE THERE? Evaluate alternatives such as GSA Global Supply, Governmentwide Acquisition Contracts (GWACS), and subcontracting/teaming.
3. WHO BUYS WHAT I SELL? See this post from the Wisconsin Procurement Institute for some good tips.
4. WHAT NAICS AND SINS FIT MY PRODUCTS AND SERVICES? Identify the NAICS and SINs that fit your products or services. The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Codes help you identify the GSA Schedule and Special Item Numbers (SINS). SINs are a categorization method that groups similar products, services, and solutions together to aid in the acquisition process. COROLLARY. WHAT SCHEDULE SHOULD I USE? Identify the appropriate schedule here.
5. WHAT DOES THE SOLICITATION REQUIRE? Read and understand the solicitation. All current solicitations are posted on FedBizOpps or can be found through the GSA eLibrary. Make sure you qualify and have the two-years past performance required to submit a proposal.
6. WHAT IS NEW IN GSA SCHEDULES? Are you familiar with the new Transactional Data Reporting (TDR) Pilot which applies to particular SINS across various schedules. Established in June 2016, the TDR rule eliminates previously required Commercial Sales Practices Disclosures and Price Reductions clause tracking and provides a substantial decrease in paperwork.
7. WHAT INFORMATION DO I NEED TO BEGIN? Gather documents and information on labor categories, prices, your ‘Most Favored Customer’, and performance. Also, make sure you can show financial capability, past performance, and regulatory compliance. There is no due date, so make sure you have everything in place before starting your proposal.
8. SHOULD I TREAT THIS LIKE A REGULAR PROPOSAL? Yes. Although there are no limits on the number of awardees, you still have to address the RFP. Assemble your offer. Use formal processes, get the right people involved, and consider consultants or outside help as needed. Then check, check, and check again before submitting your proposal.
9. HOW MUCH TIME WILL IT TAKE TO RECEIVE THE AWARD? The GSA states that it may take up to a year to get an award, although it may take longer depending on the workload and the complexity of the proposal. Each offer requires different levels of negotiation and time which can be delayed further if you make mistakes and have to keep resubmitting or responding to questions.
10. WHAT DO I DO IF I WIN? Have a strategy in place. A GSA Schedule is a vehicle and a means to an end. Make sure you are ready to take the necessary steps as a GSA Contractor. Remember you must meet the reportable sales requirements to maintain your schedule.

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