Today I am launching a series of new GSA programs collectively called the "Making It Easier" initiative – and I'm pleased to tell you that this is a great example of a name that exactly fits a program.
Making It Easier, or MIE, does just what it says — makes it easier for new and innovative companies to do business with the government. And it also provides small businesses with tools and support they need to do work with the government. It even includes an IT Schedule 70 Plain Language Roadmap that does a wonderful job of explaining the Schedule 70 offer process for new vendors in clear and simple terms. Once new companies are awarded a Schedule contract, the standardized Welcome Package will put an end to new vendors receiving inconsistent and outdated guidance.
Every year, tens of billions of dollars go through GSA's Multiple Award Schedules — and we've heard time and time again from the vendor community that getting a Schedule contract is too hard and it takes too long. And then once you're there, it can be difficult to make changes to a contract. MIE has answers to both those issues: they're called the FASt Lane and IT Schedule 70 Springboard.
FASt Lane cuts the time it takes to get specific new innovative IT suppliers on Schedule 70 … from 110 to 45 days. And the time it takes for changes to be made to a current contract has been cut down to one or two business days …much quicker than before.
The IT Schedule 70 Startup Springboard gives highly qualified businesses an alternative to the current 2-year professional experience requirement. This means we can get startup companies offering emerging technologies onto Schedules and into the hands of customer agencies faster.
GSA also recently launched a Forecast Tool giving small businesses a new way to search for upcoming contracting opportunities – another piece of GSA's growing environment of innovation and progress.
Please take a look at my newest video for more about GSA's innovative Making It Easier initiatives. This is a good starting point to improve access to GSA's Schedules and will truly make it easier for our suppliers to work with us. I'm very proud and excited about these new programs and I know you will be, too.