Category Archives: GSA

GSA Schedule Sales Decline But GSA Expects Market Share to Grow

Hands Holding a Seedling and SoilA recent Federal Times article (using data compiled by Deltek) noted that 2012 GSA schedule sales were 2.9 percent lower than those in 2011, making it the second year in a row that sales were down. Sequestration could be the simple explanation but it is the tightening of federal dollars resulting from the sequester that GSA believes could turn the schedule sales’ tides: ‘“Right now, as budgets tighten across the federal government, the (GSA) is uniquely positioned to support our partner agencies so that they can focus their energy and funding on their own important missions,’ (GSA Administrator Dan) Tangherlini told the Senate Homeland Security Committee on July 15.”

The article also notes that only about 12 percent of federal procurement dollars that could have gone through GSA in 2012 actually did. GSA officials have confidence their share is growing and say they’re expecting to hit 17 percent by the end of 2013 with a goal of 90 percent within the next decade.

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OASIS Request for Proposal Series #4: Pricing Proposal

Thank you for continuing to follow our special GSA OASIS blog series. In case you missed it, GSA released the final solicitations for both OASIS (GS00Q-13-DR-0001) and OASIS SB (GS00Q-13-DR-0002) on FedBizOpps Wednesday, July 31, 2013. Questions about the solicitation must be submitted to NLT August 20th at 4:00pm CDT and proposals are due NLT Tuesday, September 17th at 4:00pm CDT. Please see the solicitations for detailed submission requirements.

In today’s post, I will be discussing the pricing proposal sections of OASIS and OASIS SB. What you might find peculiar about the pricing proposal is that, after all the talk about points in the other evaluation criteria, there are no points to be earned on the pricing proposal. The source selection strategy for OASIS is “highest technically rated with fair and reasonable pricing.” Accordingly, price will not be used to differentiate between offerors. This may seem hard to believe, but pricing will be evaluated on a pass/fail basis only. As long as you propose fair and reasonable pricing, you will pass the pricing section. So, you may be wondering, how will I know if my pricing is fair and reasonable? This is where things start to get interesting.

One aspect of OASIS that consistently raised the most concern in industry is its use of

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OASIS Revised Draft RFP Series, #2 Relevant Experience and Past Performance

ProjectGSA posted the revised draft solicitations for OASIS and OASIS SB in late June. The revised draft makes significant changes to the requirements for relevant experience, including the point allocations. The changes are summarized below in blue as part of this update to our previous post on this topic.

Potential bidders must understand when selecting relevant experience that TEAMING WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED at the MASTER contract level; all relevant experience examples must be

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UPDATED: GSA OASIS Draft RFP Series, #1 Size Standard NAICS Pools

UPDATE (7/23/13): The revised draft solicitations for OASIS and OASIS SB made one major change in regard to bidding for particular pools. GSA is now requiring bidders to provide projects demonstrating experience in all pools applied for. Please note that, according to Jim Ghiloni via the OASIS Industry Community on GSA Interact, although the revised draft states that the projects mapping to NAICS Codes (as reported in FPDS) would come from the five relevant experience projects, this will change in the final RFP. Points will still be awarded to companies using projects with OASIS NAICS Codes reported in FPDS for their relevant experience.

GSA anticipates that projects supporting particular NAICS Codes (and therefore pools) will be submitted in addition to relevant experience, similar to how the Mission Spaces requirement is being treated under the revised solicitation. The proposed change requires OASIS SB bidders to submit two prime contracts per pool they are bidding on and OASIS bidders to submit three. All projects must have at least a 3.50 rating for past performance. Exactly what project documentation must be submitted is unclear, but under the Mission Spaces requirement, bidders only have to submit the contract award documentation. Again, this requirement is still very much in flux, but you should be aware that the requirement in the revised draft solicitation WILL change.

UPDATE (5/3/13): One important point I failed to mention is that on OASIS SB, GSA intends to award at least three spots in every pool to the following socioeconomic groups-8(a), SDVOSB, HUBZone, WOSB, and EDWOSB. This does not mean that only 25 of the 40 spots in a pool are available for other small businesses, though. The top 40 evaluation will proceed “blind” to socioeconomic status. If there are not at least three representatives from a particular socioeconomic group in the top 40 for a given pool, additional awards will be made to the next highest rated qualified bidder(s) in that group until there are three.

Welcome to the first post in a special series about the GSA OASIS draft RFP. First a disclaimer – all posts are based on information obtained from the OASIS draft RFP and the most current Q&A available on the OASIS Industry Community on GSA Interact. Changes are certain to occur between the draft solicitation and the final; Aronson will identify major known changes as soon as we are aware of them. Please subscribe to our RSS feed to follow this series and to make sure that you receive breaking information as it happens!

Today’s post will discuss the use of NAICS code ‘pools’ to determine a contractor’s size status and eligibility to bid on OASIS SB. Initially, GSA had intended to base the size standard for OASIS SB on a single NAICS code (541330 exception, $35.5M) based on market research concerning the preponderance of work likely to be awarded under the vehicle; however, a recent rule proposed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) caused them to change this approach. Due to the provisions of Section 1331 of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010 and concerns about the improper allocation of small business credit under multiple-award contracts, the SBA plans to make significant changes to the FAR. Under the proposed rule, “the contracting officer may divide a multiple award contract for divergent goods and services into discrete categories, each of which is assigned a NAICS code with a corresponding size standard.”

In order to accommodate the probable rule change, GSA

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UPDATED, GSA OASIS Draft RFP Series, #3 Contractor System, Certification and Clearance Requirements

UPDATE 7/22/13: GSA’s OASIS Program Team released its revised draft RFP late last month. There have been several minor changes that affect the systems, certifications, and clearances evaluations. Firstly, DCAA has agreed to audit the accounting systems of all apparent winners who do not have an approved accounting system. Although third-party accounting system reviews will no longer be accepted to establish adequacy, contractors without an audited accounting system should consider a third-party review to ensure that their system is approvable by DCAA before bidding. Bidders with an audited accounting system already in place will now earn points.

Additionally, OASIS will now be scored on a 10,000 point scale. Contractor systems, certifications, and clearances account for up to 20% of available evaluation points. The list of the relevant systems, certifications, and clearances and their corresponding point totals has been updated in the post below. Finally, GSA now includes the ISO 17025 certification.

Thank you for continuing to follow our special GSA OASIS blog series. Before discussing the requirements on OASIS and OASIS SB for contractor systems, compliance, and certifications, a disclaimer – all posts are based on information from the OASIS draft RFP and the most current information available on the OASIS Industry Community on GSA Interact. Changes are certain to occur between the draft solicitation and the final RFP; Aronson will identify major changes as soon as we are aware of them.

Before making a bid decision, companies must understand that simply meeting the minimum solicitation requirements will not be enough to win an OASIS contract. GSA wants to award to ‘best in class’ contractors, so points are only awarded for exceeding the minimum requirements. Although only 20% of the total points are currently allotted to to systems and certifications, these could be critical differentiators if the competition is as intense as we expect. GSA stated in the most recent RFP Q&A that it did “not anticipate that many, if any, Contractors will have all systems and certifications that are encouraged. The evaluation process is about distinguishing between Offerors.”

There has been a lot of confusion regarding which systems and certifications are actually required. The purpose of this blog is to summarize what is actually a requirement versus what is merely a recommendation.

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