GSA Releases Federal Marketplace Strategy Updates

The General Services Administration (GSA) released its Federal Marketplace (FMP) Strategy Summer 2019 release today, providing updates concerning the agency’s project to modernize and streamline Federal acquisition.

There are six main features to the new FMP Strategy in the release, the first of which includes new enhancements to GSA Advantage! – GSA’s online government purchasing service.

“[GSA] implemented new features in GSA Advantage! to mandate suppliers to provide order status, improve understanding of minimum order quantities, and increase the accuracy of ‘US’ country of origin designations,” GSA said.

The second update includes a new rule which removes the requirement for Federal agencies to determine best procurement approaches – known as Best Interest Determination – before using they use GSA as an acquisition provider.

“You will no longer have to write a best interest determination to use GSA vehicles such as the Schedules, Alliant or OASIS or obtain assisted acquisition services,” GSA said. “You can more easily do business with GSA by removal of this burdensome requirement.”

One of the key pillars of the FMP Strategy is the Multiple Awards Schedules (MAS) Consolidation to bring GSA’s 24 MAS onto a single schedule. GSA said in the latest update that its MAS team has created a webinar and FAQ to easily communicate to suppliers the changes that will come in the MAS Consolidation.

The MAS team also released requests for information (RFIs) to collect feedback on the new terms and conditions it hopes to create under its consolidated MAS solicitation. The team released RFIs to gather feedback on large category, subcategory, and Special Item Numbers (SINs).

“We’ve worked to remove legacy, duplicative, and unnecessary clauses so that it’s easier to buy and sell with the federal government,” GSA Administrator Emily Murphy said of the terms and conditions RFI. “Our goal is to reduce the administrative burden for all who interact with GSA schedules, and this RFI will allow us to further hear from industry on the needs of today’s buyers and sellers.”

GSA hopes to have its final MAS solicitation released later this year.

The fourth update to the FMP Strategy regards the enhanced wage determination functionality on the System for Award Management (SAM) website – the centralized registration site for Federal contractors. GSA has created over 9,200 wage determinations and bargaining agreements on SAM, which has replaced the now-decommissioned WDOL.gov site.

GSA also has expanded Order Level Materials (OLMs) authority to make it more flexible in order “to easily acquire OLMs to provide a total solution, creating similar capabilities between the MAS program and other established indefinite-delivery / indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contracts.”

As many agencies have begun cloud migrations and adopt different providers in developing cloud environments, GSA also created a Cloud Information Center to support the President’s Management Agenda and Office and Management and Budget’s Cloud Smart strategy, which OMB finalized this week.

“You have a centralized, collaborative resource hub to easily access the information you need to transition to the cloud from start to finish. Understand challenges, access best practices, download acquisition guidance and templates, find the best products and technology the marketplace has to offer, and how to connect with GSA resources to buy,” GSA said.

GSA’s final FMP Strategy update expands the use of Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) by offering SBIR Phase III contracts nationwide as an assisted acquisition service from the Federal Acquisition Service.

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