Federal Marketplace (FMP) Strategy Fall 2019 Release

GSA’s Federal Marketplace Strategy Fall 2019 Release delivers a mix of policy, process, and technology project updates and improvements to modernize and simplify your buying and selling experience. Check it out and share your feedback by joining our FMP Community of Practice.

Journey Maps

Supplier Journey Map

As a supplier, you go through a series of interactions in different phases to sell solutions in the federal marketplace.

GSA is listening and making improvements to your experience with us and in the federal marketplace! With each release, you learn about what GSA is doing to improve the experience in different phases of the acquisition journey.

Customer Journey Map

As a buyer, you go through a series of interactions in different phases of your buying experience for the acquisition of goods and services.

GSA is listening and making improvements to your experience with us and in the federal marketplace! With each release, you learn about what GSA is doing to improve the experience in different phases of the acquisition journey.

Project Improvements

New Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) Solicitation

Release of the single MAS solicitation on FBO.gov.

Improvements for Suppliers

Yesterday

  • Some terms and conditions found in the MAS solicitations did not align with commercial practices and meet the needs of the evolving federal acquisition landscape.
  • The solicitation format varied for each of the 24 Schedule vehicles.
  • There were different and sometimes difficult to understand requirements to provide an offer.
  • There were over 130 terms and conditions in the solicitation that did not need to be included in the MAS solicitation.
  • There were over 900 Special Items Numbers (SINs) that were duplicative and not written in plain language.

Today

  • There is a new and improved single MAS vehicle that is organized in a more logical format with consistent and streamlined terms and conditions and a category structure similar to the governmentwide categories.
  • The Schedule is organized into 12 Large Categories, 83 Subcategories similar to the governmentwide categories.
  • There are 318 SINs based on North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes.
  • There is a new Solicitation Cover Page Provision (SCP-FSS-001) that streamlines the offer process, gets rid of duplication, and employs standardized requirements across the program, such as project experiences and past performance.

Improvements for Workforce

Yesterday

  • There was inconsistency across the MAS program given that there were 24 separate Schedule vehicles.

Today

  • There is a new Solicitation Cover Page Provision (SCP-FSS-001) that brings consistency to the offer process, gets rid of duplication, and employs standardized requirements across the program for project experiences and past performance.
  • The acquisition workforce will also benefit from the new and improved single MAS vehicle, which is organized in a more logical format with consistent and streamlined terms and conditions and a more logical category structure similar to the governmentwide category management categories.

MAS Consolidation 30 Day Advance Notice & Industry Webinars

A plain language, 30 day advance notice announcing the new consolidated Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) solicitation was posted on GSA Interact on August 28, 2019. This notice included a copy of the draft solicitation, in depth analysis and Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for the Requests for information, and an updated industry FAQ [PDF - 514 KB]. We also hosted two industry webinars to discuss the upcoming changes.

Improvements for Suppliers

Yesterday

  • You had little insight in to the draft MAS consolidated solicitation package using the new easy to read format, consistent attachments, streamlined terms and conditions and category structure similar to the Governmentwide categories.

Today

  • We heard your feedback and incorporated changes to the proposed solicitation format, terms and conditions, large categories, subcategories, and SINs based on your suggestions, questions and concerns. You are up-to-date on the MAS Solicitation and have prepared your organization for doing business in a more modernized and streamlined way.

Request for Information (RFI), Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) and Feedback Loop

Improvements for Suppliers

Yesterday

  • You provided your feedback to the Requests for Information (RFIs) for the solicitation format and terms and conditions and the large categories subcategories, and SINs.

Today

  • We heard your feedback and incorporated changes to the proposed solicitation format, terms and conditions, large categories, subcategories, and SINs based on your suggestions, questions, and concerns. You can review our response and FAQs based on your feedback on Interact

GSA released the Commercial Platforms solicitation in an important step towards the implementation of the initial proof of concept. Commercial Platforms will modernize the way federal agencies buy commercial off-the-shelf products through partnerships with multiple e-marketplace platform providers. The goal of the proof of concept is to start small with a subset of participating agencies to test, refine, and ultimately grow the program based on the lessons learned. By launching the initial proof of concept in early calendar year 2020, GSA offers a way for agencies to access commercial platforms as part of a whole-of-government approach and improve visibility into their online purchase card spend.

Improvements for Buyers

Yesterday

  • Agencies had limited visibility into their open-market, online spend through commercial websites with little insight into what is being introduced into their supply chains.

Today

  • The solicitation advances efforts to streamline commercial item purchasing, with its modern features and functionality, while providing greater visibility into online purchase card buys.

Improvements for Suppliers

Yesterday

  • The administrative burden on suppliers who sell exclusively commercial items to the government market was high and needed to be reduced.

Today

  • The solicitation advances efforts to provide new opportunities for suppliers of routine commercial items to sell to government in the same way they sell to private consumers.

GSA released its draft Request for Quote (RFQ) for the Contract Acquisition Lifecycle Management (CALM) System in the fourth quarter and received extensive feedback (over 100 comments) from industry and our acquisition workforce. With the changes made to the first draft, GSA will release a second draft RFQ in the beginning of the first quarter of FY20 to solicit any additional final input. Once feedback from stakeholders is incorporated, we anticipate releasing the final RFQ later in the first quarter. These iterative steps with industry and the acquisition workforce are contributing to an improved outcome and bring us closer to a modern, enterprise-wide contract writing system.

In addition, the project has benefitted from a tremendous amount of engagement and feedback from our acquisition workforce through several workshops and listening sessions, all focused around tasks like developing requirements, standardizing vocabulary and improving business processes. More than 250 acquisition workforce members participated, resulting in more than 160 improvements to Federal Acquisition Service (FAS) business processes. Improvements have included things like updating existing policy, removing inactive policy, adding missing items (like options) and standardizing vocabulary, among others.

This engagement, preparation, and business process refinement will make for a more constructive relationship with the supplier delivering the new system to the Federal Acquisition Service.

Over 95 percent of vendors on Schedule have now accepted GSA’s final General Services Acquisition Regulation (GSAR) rule, which was issued in February 2018 to address common Commercial Supplier Agreement (CSA) terms and conditions, also known as End User License Agreements (EULAs), that were inconsistent with federal law.

This rule mitigates risk for our federal agency customers, reduces proposal and administrative costs for our industry partners, and helps expedite the contract review process for GSA contracting officers.

This change is part of GSA’s effort to better meet stakeholder needs. Allowing GSA to incorporate terms into its contracts, such as Multiple Award Schedules, to uniformly counteract the common conflicting commercial CSA terms drastically and immediately reduces risk to the government.

Improvements for Suppliers & Buyers

Yesterday

  • Commercial Supplier Agreements (CSA) were a point of frustration when negotiating terms and conditions in federal procurement. Although these agreements are commonplace in commercial transactions, government buyers had to negotiate each one individually to address terms that were inconsistent with federal law. These inconsistencies required industry and government to spend time and resources negotiating and tailoring CSAs to comply with federal law prior to award, ensuring both parties had agreement on the contract terms.

Today

  • Over 95 percent of vendors on Schedule have accepted the mass modification, agreeing to the clauses issued by the rule. The CSA policy streamlines the negotiation process and protects FAS, vendors, and our customer agencies by uniformly addressing certain contract provisions that are standard in commercial contracts, but deemed “unenforceable” when applied to federal contracts.

Purchase of WaterSense and other water-efficient products is required for many federal agencies. FAS supports these requirements by displaying a WaterSense icon on GSA Advantage for certified products. Until recently, the WaterSense icon was self-designated by sellers. This required manual input every time a product catalog was submitted and resulted in false positives (i.e., products that were not certified receiving the icon). FAS partnered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to migrate to a process that automatically assigns the WaterSense icon by matching products on GSA Advantage to products listed on the WaterSense registry. This improvement removes the burden to sellers and FAS while significantly reducing false positives.

Improvements for Buyers

Yesterday

  • You could not easily find WaterSense-certified products on GSA Advantage.

Today

  • You can easily find and buy WaterSense-certified products through GSA Advantage.

Improvements for Suppliers

Yesterday

  • You had to review and manually assign the WaterSense icon to products every time you submitted a product catalog.

Today

  • You do not have to spend any time assigning the WaterSense icon to certify products on your catalog as it is done automatically.

beta.SAM.gov is now powered by the Federal Hierarchy, a directory or “family tree” that organizes federal government users and establishes relationships between each department/independent agency’s sub-tiers and its offices. As applications like FPDS.gov and FBO.gov transition to beta.SAM.gov, they’ll all use this new authoritative source, making it easier for agencies to maintain a single, accurate list of their office information, and for suppliers searching for opportunities or researching contract awards.

Visit the Learning Center in beta.SAM.gov to learn more about the new Federal Hierarchy or reach out to our Federal Service Desk at FSD.gov.

Agencies want to make it as easy as possible for citizens to verify their identity online while maintaining high authentication standards. Login.gov now accepts commonly available driver’s license information and cross-references it with public databases to validate user identities.

Login.gov provides federal programs secure, private identity verifications at National Institute of Standards and Technology (NISTs) Identity Assurance Level 2 (IAL2). Login.gov now has a FedRAMP Moderate-level Authority to Operate (ATO), which will meet the needs of all but the most sensitive applications.

Improvements for Buyers

Yesterday

  • As a government buyer interested in an identity proofing solution, you might have to rely on a knowledge-based authentication remote proofing solution.

Today

  • As a government buyer, you can use login.gov to verify your users' identity securely and remotely knowing that their driver's license information was cross-referenced with public databases as part of the overall authentication process.
print Share Icon Last Reviewed: 2019-10-02