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Making it Easier to get on GSA Schedules

The GSA Making it Easier (MIE) program announced its second phase on October 24th with a series of initiatives meant to make doing business with the government less trying. If you’re a small business, you already know that working with the General Services Administration can be daunting. Making it Easier is GSA’s answer to this complaint. The program’s goal is to shrink the hurdles companies must go through to get on GSA’s schedules, opening the door for small or new businesses to sell through GSA.


The GSA Making it Easier Initiative

GSA’s Making it Easier program announced Phase 2 on October 24th. The initiative, rolled out in April, is meant to streamline the acquisition process for small and new businesses trying to get on a GSA Schedule. Courtesy of GSA.

GSA Making it Easier: An Overview

The MIE program launched in April, which means it’s had some time to settle in. Thanks to GSA’s new report, we can see more clearly: a) what the agency is doing to help businesses, b) how their efforts have panned out so far, and c) what your company can do to jump on board.

IT Schedule 70 Startup Springboard:

New businesses, take note. Getting on GSA’s IT Schedule 70, once a far-away goal for businesses with less than two years of experience, is now a possibility. If you are an experienced professional but your company is new to the scene, the Startup Springboard is made for you.

GSA noticed that innovative tech startups were unable to get on IT Schedule 70 because they were missing the required two years of corporate experience. Not wanting to miss out on cutting-edge technologies, they created a workaround: Companies without two years of corporate experience can now use the experience of their executives and key personnel to substitute. They can also use those peoples’ project experience as a substitute for past performance, and provide proof of financial responsibility instead of two years of financial statements.

Don’t forget that you still have to meet the FAR requirements and prove that your business can handle jobs offered through Schedule 70. Take a look at past task orders and the work of other companies in your NAICS code using a market intelligence service like EZGovOpps, and make sure your business has the skills you’ll need. As long as your business is capable of doing the job, GSA is giving you more ways to prove it.

IT Schedule 70 FASt Lane

According to GSA, the FASt Lane program has cut the 110-day average wait to get on Schedule 70 down to 31 days for new offers. If your company already participates in one of a list of other government initiatives, such as the Army Contracting Command (AMCOM) Express, you are eligible for this expedited process. See GSA’s full list of eligible programs to find out if you can take advantage of this opportunity.


Accurate, up-to-date resources (in plain English!)

In April, GSA Making it Easier rolled out two information resources. The first was the Schedule 70 Plain Language Roadmap, a clear-cut guide to preparing your IT Schedule 70 Offer, intended to simplify and clarify the process. The second resource, the MAS Welcome Package, is given to new awardees when they get on the Schedule to make sure they have accurate information about doing business through Schedule 70.

In Phase 2, announced on October 24th, GSA is developing a series of similar plain language guides for each Schedule. They also announced a simplification of their Help Desk, offering a single point of contact for all inquiries.


Is GSA Making it Easier?

GSA is taking some important steps forward in their efforts to simplify and streamline the process. This is a long time coming, especially for IT companies on Schedule 70 who sell modern, cutting-edge, and ever-changing technology products. But the process is still complicated, and GSA has only gone so far – companies new to the process can be left in the dark.

A service like EZGovOpps can help fill in the gaps and take your business to the next level. A market intelligence platform can help answer questions about Schedule 70, like:

  • Who are the other players on the schedule, and how does my business stack up?
  • How much money is being spent through the SIN categories my business is eligible for?
  • What contracts and experiences should my business pursue now to help qualify us for the schedule?

Ultimately, GSA may be Making it Easier, but the process is still complex, and growing small businesses still need support. Feel free to LiveChat one of our Analysts below and ask us how EZGovOpps can help you break into this complicated but rewarding field.

Don’t forget to view our full GovCon News section for more intel.

Posted by Libby Solomon on November 2, 2016

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