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Ringing In the New Year with New Mass Mods

Posted By Courtney Fairchild, President & Co-Founder, Global Services; WIPP Board of Directors, Vice Chair, Wednesday, January 8, 2020
Updated: Wednesday, January 22, 2020

This is the second in a series of blog posts on the GSA MAS Consolidation. Read the first blog post.

 

Phase 1 of GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) Consolidation was implemented on October 1, 2019. That change had no impact on existing GSA Schedule holders—but as GSA gears up for the next phases in January 2020, contractors should prepare for changes coming their way. 


Courtney Fairchild

Phase II

 

At the end of January, GSA will initiate a Mass Modification (Mod) where all existing contract holders will be instructed to accept the new Terms and Conditions (T&C) under the Consolidated Multiple Award Schedule. Accepting the new T&C will not change any other components of a contractor’s Schedule.


Contractors will retain their contract number(s) and previously negotiated factors such as Basis of Award (BOA) and customer/delivery discounts. However, changes will be made to GSA sites such as eMod, eBuy, eLibrary, and GSA Advantage, to reflect the new solicitation items. Contractors will have the ability to update their contracts, but the Add/Delete SIN option will be unavailable on eMod until early March to ensure that all Phase II Mods are processed first. 

 


Phase III

 

Phase III, anticipated around July, will affect contractors who have more than one current GSA Schedule Contract. Prior to this Mod, GSA will contact affected contractors with consolidation options specific to their held contracts. During this Phase, contractors will work to consolidate their separate Schedules (e.g. PSS and IT) into a single MAS Consolidated Schedule. GSA and contractors will work together to decide how to best consolidate their offerings through the addition/deletion of SINs on the contractor-selected singular surviving contract. 


How to Prepare

 

Prior to any Mod, contractors should:

 

  • Join the MAS community on GSA’s Interact site.

  • Review the new solicitation.

  • Review the new SIN structure via Available Offerings attachment.

  • Ensure contract is up-to-date.

  • Ensure completion of all previous Mods.

  • Review and understand your Pricelist.


If you have questions about the Phase II or Phase III Mod, you can reach out to GSA’s MAS Program Management Office (PMO) at MASPMO@GSA.gov. For questions specific to your contract, it’s best to email your assigned Contracting Officer (CO) directly to discuss. These changes can be jarring, but please remember there is a support system in place to guide you. 

 

 

Want to know more?

View the free ChallengeHER on-demand webinar from Courtney Fairchild

 

 

Tags:  federal contracting  Federal Procurement  Federal Procurement Opportunities 

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The GSA MAS Consolidation: Catalyst for Change in GovCon

Posted By Laura Berry, Wednesday, December 25, 2019
Updated: Wednesday, January 22, 2020

This is the first in a series of blog posts on the GSA MAS Consolidation. Read the second blog post.

 

On October 1, 2019, GSA released their much anticipated Consolidated Schedule. The GSA Schedules Program, which previously included 24 Schedules, is now an overarching Solicitation (#47QSMD20R0001, Refresh #0000) with 12 Large Categories/various Subcategories. 


Courtney Fairchild

When consolidating all 24 Schedules into one, GSA selected the list of major contenders (the Government’s most purchased goods/services) and divided them into Large Categories, which resemble GSA’s Category Management Initiative. Within each Large Category, complementary services/products are further divided into subcategories, and these subcategories are further broken down into Special Item Numbers (SINs). For those of you who have had a contract for years these changes can be overwhelming, but I’m here to break it down for you.


Firstly, goodbye random SIN Numbers, hello NAICS-forward SINs! Up till now, understanding the GSA Schedules meant learning a complicated and arbitrary set of SIN numbers and descriptions. Under the new solicitation, GSA reworked the SIN numbers to align with the much more familiar NAICS code system. Under the legacy solicitation, for example, one just had to know that Perpetual Software Licenses was SIN 132-33, with a NAICS code of 511210. Now, the Software Licenses SIN is just 511210. 

 

 For the most part, there’s a clear, one-to-one correspondence like this between the old and new SINs. For those mappings that aren’t so clear, keep an eye out for GSA’s updated Old SIN vs. New SIN Crosswalk to decipher which SIN numbers you are proposing this go around. 

 

Want to know more?

View the free ChallengeHER on-demand webinar from Courtney Fairchild


Secondly, GSA has broadened past performance options! Previously, contractors had to demonstrate successful past performance by purchasing an Open Ratings, Inc. Report. For companies with pre-existing Performance Assessment Reporting System (CPARS), the Open Ratings requirement was redundant—why get a new report when the Government already has documentation of your performance? GSA listened: now, a Schedule offer requires three or more CPARs, if you have them. And while the Consolidated Schedule solicitation still allows for Open Ratings Reports, as of December 6, 2019, Open Ratings is no longer accepting new orders. If you have an existing, valid Open Ratings Report already, you may use it. Otherwise, offerors who cannot demonstrate Past Performance via CPARs will instead need to provide a Past Performance Narrative containing brief project descriptions and points of contact. 


Thirdly, what happens in the legacy program, stays in the legacy program. Previously, any rejected submission had to be provided and narratively addressed during the next submission attempt. Contractors are now no longer required to disclose pending, current, or rejected submissions. 


Lastly, most submissions now only require only one Relevant Project Experience narrative per proposed SIN, EXCEPT the Large Category IT, which requires two. (Note: some IT Subcategories also have additional requirements beyond that—always check the SIN’s requirements!). Under the legacy solicitation, contractors had to provide anywhere from one to three projects, depending on which Schedule and SIN they were pursuing. This made it hard for younger companies without a long history of Project Experience to get on Schedule. 


I am very excited to see how GSA has listened to stakeholder feedback in this endeavor. I believe this new MAS Solicitation will make the submission process more readily available for industry partners and more user-friendly for government buyers. And with less redundancy and confusion, contractors will see more benefit in getting on Schedule. Change is good.

Tags:  federal contracting  Federal Procurement  Federal Procurement Opportunities 

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Advocacy Update: Legislation Introduced to Encourage Agencies to Use Small Businesses

Posted By Advocacy Team, Wednesday, December 18, 2019

The WIPP-supported bill, The Promoting Rigorous and Innovative Cost Efficiencies for Federal Procurement and Acquisitions (PRICE) Act of 2019 (S. 3038)was introduced this week, which addresses agency utilization of small businesses in the federal marketplace. We are thrilled to see this bill introduced by Senators Gary Peters (D-MI) and Joni Ernst (R-IA) and will continue to advocate for its passage. 

 

Read WIPP’s combined letter of support for the bill.


As many small businesses find that agencies continue to be reluctant to use small business programs, this bipartisan bill addresses this prevailing issue by requiring the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to convene the existing Chief Acquisition Officers Council (CAOC) to identify and disseminate best practices in non-defense small business contracting in the federal government. The CAOC would also be required to solicit public input and engage with governmental and nongovernmental experts.

The PRICE Act will positively impact the way in which this valuable information is gathered and shared with the public and across the federal government, as well as provide increased opportunities for small businesses by educating the acquisition workforce on best practices for using small business programs.

 

 

Tags:  Advocacy  federal contracting  Federal Procurement  Federal Procurement Opportunities  legislation 

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Advocacy Update: FAR Council Rules That Matter To Your Business

Posted By Elizabeth Sullivan, WIPP Advocacy Team, Wednesday, October 16, 2019


This New FAR Council Rule on Covered Telecommunication Equipment Will Impact Your Business, Even Outside of the Tech Industry

The Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) Council has proposed an interim final rule that will amend the FAR to prohibit the Federal Government from procuring or obtaining, or extending or renewing a contract to procure or obtain, “any equipment, system, or service that uses covered telecommunications equipment or services as a substantial or essential component of any system, or as critical technology as part of any system” in order to combat the national security and intellectual property threats that face the United States. The definition of “covered telecommunications equipment or services” are components from: Huawei, ZTE Corporation, Hytera Communications Corporation, Hangzhou Hikvision Digital Technology Company, and Dahua Technology Company.  


For all businesses, the rule:

  • Prohibits contractors from providing covered telecommunications equipment or services unless the agency confirms that an exception applies or a waiver is granted 
  • Requires every offeror for a contract or order to represent whether or not it will provide covered telecommunications equipment or services as part of its offer and, if so, to furnish additional detail about the covered equipment or services 
  • Mandates that contractors report any covered equipment or services if discovered during the course of contract performance 

WIPP recognized the importance of this rule and the impact it will have on small business federal contractors. Read WIPP’s comments on this rule.
 

Proposed Rule on Lowest Price Technically Acceptable Source Selection Process (LPTA) from FAR Council Discourages Use of Practice Across Government

Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) has been a long hated acquisition pricing policy in the small business community. Seen as a “race to the bottom,” the FAR Council has issued a proposed rule to avoid using Lowest Price Technically Acceptable (LPTA) source selection criteria in circumstances that would deny the Government the benefits of cost and technical tradeoffs in the source selection process. This rule also states specifically that LPTA source selection criteria should be avoided for procurements for IT services, cyber security, systems engineering services, and others.

 

Think this is a good idea?

 

Comment on this rule by December 2, 2019

 

Tags:  Advocacy  Federal Procurement  policy 

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more Calendar

2/12/2020
WIPP Policy Update - February 2020

2/18/2020
WEP Training - The Ugly Truth About CMMC

2/19/2020
WIPP Member Orientation - February 2020

3/11/2020
WIPP Policy Update - March 2020

4/8/2020
WIPP Policy Update - April 2020

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