What is a GSA Schedule Contract?
It is the purchasing and procurement responsibility of GSA that administers the GSA Schedules and awards GSA Schedule Contracts to businesses who wish to do business with the federal government.
A GSA schedule contract is an official contract with the federal government, awarded and administered by GSA.
Virtually everything the federal government needs to buy is represented in the GSA Schedules.
Today, GSA Schedules are the favored purchasing mechanism for the majority of federal buyers, and ease the purchase process for federal buyers by offering pre-negotiated prices for goods and services.
To be awarded a GSA Schedule Contract, vendors must respond to the solicitation specific to the schedule to which they are applying. Selecting the right schedule, and classifying your products and services under GSA’s Special Item Number (SIN) is the first step. The process has multiple steps and generally requires demonstration of your pricing structure and your commercial practices and discounts. A proposal is submitted to the GSA for a contracting officer to consider.
Prices and terms are negotiated with the GSA contracting officer. A contract award follows a successful negotiation. The GSA contracting officer is interested in getting the best possible price and terms for government buyers.
It is called a Multiple Award Schedule because federal agencies may authorize multiple buys from that contract vehicle. A MAS contract is awarded for five years, and most may be renewed for three five-year periods resulting in a 20-year contract if all renewals are executed.
Once awarded a contract, a vendor’s products or services may be bought directly, in many cases with no further competition. Since prices are already negotiated, the vendor must comply with all the terms and conditions of the GSA schedule contract.