Small Business Assistance Frequently Asked Questions
- What is GSA?
The mission of GSA is to deliver the best value in real estate, acquisitions, and technology services to government and the American people.
GSA develops, advocates, and evaluates government wide contracting and procurement policies.
The Agency also awards contracts for commercially available products and services as well as construction and maintenance of federal buildings, including U.S. courthouses.
For more information visit gsa.gov
- Where Can I Find Contracting Opportunities?
Vendors who are looking for procurement opportunities in ALL Business Industries (including construction and building-related services) should visit Federal Business Opportunities (FedBizOps) at www.fbo.gov. This government point of entry for procurements lists opportunities at or above the $25,000 threshold. For procurement opportunities under the $25,000 threshold, you can view GSA Forecast of Procurement Opportunities also at acquisition.gov and/or contact the Regional Office of Small Business Utilization for information.
Construction and building services vendors should also reach out to the GSA Property Managers as well. These managers oversee the day to day operations of federal space. They have procuring authority up to the Simplified Acquisition Threshold ($150,000) and can contract with firms for minor repairs and alterations within federal space.
- What is a GSA Number?
You may have gone into the office of a federal agency to try to sell your products or services to them, and the first thing they asked you was, "Do you have a GSA number?" A GSA number is a GSA Schedules (also known as Federal Supply Schedule) contract number, that your company receives when it is awarded a GSA Schedules Contract.
- What's the advantage of being in the GSA Schedules Program?
GSA's Schedules program is the preferred method of procurement for the federal government. Federal agencies prefer to buy from GSA Schedule contract holders because they know they are getting approved products and services. Also, it means GSA has done all the legwork for them and negotiated the best price and the best value for their dollar.
- How long will it take me to get a GSA Number?
In many cases, the average time is 120 days. However, in some cases, due to the economy and the volume of offers received, it may take our acquisition centers a bit longer to evaluate. This is generally true for the Information Technology and MOBIS schedule, where the contracting staff may receive up to a hundred offers per week!
- What Is the North American Industry Classification System and what is a NAICS Code?
The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) replaced the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) Codes. NAICS is an industry classification system used by the statistical agencies of the United States for classifying business establishments. NAICS includes 1,170 industries of which 565 are service based.
Size standards for industry groups qualifying as a small business are determined either by a maximum allowable number of employees, by maximum allowable annual revenue, or sometimes by both.
To find your NAICS code or codes go to: acquisition.gov
- What is System for Award Management (SAM)?
The System for Award Management (SAM) is the official U.S. government database that consolidated the Central Contractor Registry (CCR), Federal Agency Registration (Fedreg), Online Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA), and the Excluded Parties List System (EPLS). Please note that registration in this database is mandatory.
For more information, visit www.sam.gov.
- Once I get a contract, how will I know where to sell my products and/or services?
As a contract holder, you will be required to upload information about your awarded products and/or services onto the GSA Advantage web site. GSA Advantage is the worldwide shopping network that any federal agency can access and browse to locate and buy a wide variety of products and services from GSA Schedule contracts, and you will be listed along with these vendors. Also, you will need to market your Schedules contract to the federal community, as sales are not guaranteed.
GSA also has a regional Office of Small Business Utilization in all of its eleven national regions. Each office can assist you with marketing strategies to help you obtain federal government contracts through your Schedule. The ROSBUs should be your first point of contact within each agency. Also, USA.gov is a good place to look for federal agencies that you’re interested in marketing to. You can find a complete listing of GSA’s Regional Office of Small Business Utilization at the Office of Small Business Utilization website.