How to Expedite Your GSA Contract?

How to Expedite Your GSA Contract?

Surely, you’ve heard this before: getting a GSA contract is a lengthy and time-consuming process. But can you expedite your GSA contract? Is there a way to speed up the GSA registration process or to accelerate GSA proposal review? In this article, we provide an overview of possible ways to get your GSA contract faster.

Check if you Qualify to be a GSA Contractor

Getting a GSA Contract

Whenever you apply for a GSA Schedule, you should complete several obligatory steps. Some of them are hard-coded, so you cannot effectively accelerate them, but others can be optimized to reduce the average review time by 20-40%.

Let’s take a look at typical steps involved in getting on a GSA Schedule

Register your business

Before you can provide your services to the government, you should register your business. Specifically:

Pass the required training

Before you can proceed to filling forms and applying for GSA schedules, you must pass certain training. This is required for all vendors. The training consists of several webinars called Pathways to Success, after which a Readiness Assessment is conducted that should help you determine whether your knowledge is enough to pursue GSA contracts.

Prepare documents

During the GSA contract schedule application process, a number of documents are prepared (see list below). Then, the GSA contracting officer reviews your submission and makes a decision as to whether you comply with the requirements. Here are some examples of documents to be submitted:

  • Price proposal
  • Technical proposal
  • Financial statements for the past two years
  • Past-performance reports
  • Letter of Supply (resellers).
  • Agent Authorization Letter (to delegate GSA registration to a third-party)

After your company is awarded a GSA Schedule, you can place bids on published GSA tenders, and reply to RFQ’s and RFI’s.

How long does it take to get on GSA Schedule?

On average, GSA contract review and approval take from six to twelve months. In marginal cases, getting on the Schedule can even take more than a year! Needles to say, every error in the submitted documents may result in prolonging the process even more.

GSA proposal review process should take no more than 120 days. But review does not guarantee approval. In case the contracting officer either has additional questions or sees that some documents are missing, he or she will decline the submission, so you will go to square one again.

How to expedite GSA Contract Review?

Yes, the process is long, but you can speed it up a bit, utilizing some working methods we describe below.

Speed up registration by hiring a professional

Here is a way to save 20-50 days, and hence get your GSA proposal reviewed in as little to 120 days. When composing the documents yourself, you have to rely on your own understanding of what should be done, and how. Sure, there are instructions on the GSA website, and there is the FAR (Federal Acquisition Regulations), but even then it is still one hell of a job to complete timely and properly. Would it not be better to delegate it to a company that knows how to do this faster, easier, and hassle – free? If this is your first GSA submission, you should probably give this option a try.

Read the solicitation carefully

The option of using a consulantwill not only save you time (100+ days easily), but potentially can guard you from all types of costly mistakes.
The solicitation published by federal agencies includes terms and requirements to contractors. Failing to read all the fineprints can jeopardize your preparedness for cooperation with federal customers. On the other hand, if you read the solicitation carefully, you can provide an accurate offer with clear financial, technical grounds, and no discrepancies. Diligently prepared offers are preferred by contracting officers, and result in shorter review and approval time.

Also, by reading each point of solicitation terms carefully, you may be able to avoid a situation, where you sign a contract that you cannot reliably fulfill. To do otherwise so could be very detrimental to your GSA business.

Provide all necessary information beforehand

In order to ensure a favorable outcome, we advise including plenty of information in your proposal, that proves your business is steady and reliable.
Another important point is to take care of your TAA compliance preliminarily, to avoid
time waste doing it after your initial proposal is declined, due to lack of it.

Other example tips include:

  • If you are a reseller, provide manufacturer’s information for each item and SIN you offer AND advise the manufacturer accordingly, in order to shorten the time needed for the government to receive all necessary technical data directly from the manufacturer.
  • Provide an accurate price list; this is crucial. If you submit your offer with a base price list, and upon review, the contracting officer finds that prices offered to commercial customers differ from those offered to the government, a red flag will come up. To expedite your GSA contract approval, you should provide the best discounted price list, with the proposal.
  • Arrange a Letter to Expedite. Contracting officers of a federal purchasing agency may request to expedite processing of the offer. However, this could get tricky, because you need to be in good relationships with the officer, and understand the goals and needs of that agency very well, to reflect them in your proposal.

Apply for MAS Express Program

The MAS Express Program can really accelerate your GSA contract review. In fact, the program is designed to streamline the review process and limit the overall offer approval time to 30 days. But your business must strictly match the criteria of the program.

Conclusion

There are ways to simplify and speed up your GSA contract approval. Some tactics are actionable right off the bat, while others require certain expertise and knowledge of federal procurement processes. If you are not sure, whether you possess such knowledge, you can always contact Price Reporter for a free consultation.

Comments
  • Interested in a GSA Schedule please.

  • Oh, now there is hardly any business that can prove that it is quite stable in the current market conditions. Does this mean that the government’s requirements can become softer?

  • Hello! Has the government’s demand for performing services changed due to the crisis? Should I continue to prepare documents for the contract, if I have already started it?

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