If you are familiar with the General Services Administration (GSA), you probably already know that they don’t allow businesses that have been operating for less than two years. The good news is that there is still a way around this ruling. Even though your business is not old enough, the GSA Springboard program lets those under IT Schedule 70 enter the mix.
In this digital age, the demand for IT tools and solutions is bound to accelerate. This acceleration makes it imperative for GSA to make certain exceptions and accept as many GSA contractors as they can. The innovative tech companies operating for less than two years can apply to the GSA Springboard program. This process streamlines the awarding of contracts allowing them to supply federal agencies’ IT services as soon as possible.
Overall, the GSA Springboard program aims to change the way the GSA gathers contractors. It considers all the opportunities that both small businesses and tech startups can benefit from just by being under the GSA Schedule. Regardless of its industry experience, they should provide innovative tech products and solutions across public sectors. The program aims to accommodate the growing needs of the federal government.
What is the Purpose of the GSA Springboard Program?
Instead of adhering to one of GSA’s most crucial requirements, the Springboard program gives younger businesses a fighting chance. The program eliminates the need for businesses to provide proof of operations over two fiscal years. It is important to note that this program is exclusively for startup companies that fall under IT Schedule 70. Taking away this eligibility requirement can open tech startups opportunities to benefit from the GSA’s Multiple Award Schedule.
The GSA Springboard program includes the Making it Easier (MIE) initiative. The main goal of this initiative is to provide access to GSA to a broader demographic. One of the initiative’s most significant steps involves alleviating the strict eligibility requirements that hold most small businesses back. GSA recognizes the issues in obtaining GSA Schedule in terms of difficulty. This program is their way to extend opportunities to more companies that truly deserve it. Considering that IT solutions and tools are needed more than ever, both parties will surely benefit from the program.
Ultimately, the GSA Springboard program plans to expedite state-of-the-art technologies and IT solutions across public sectors. With a plethora of tech companies accepted at a given time, it is easier to face specific problems and foster growth within the federal government.
Here are some of the objectives of the GSA Springboard program:
- Prospective GSA contractors under IT Schedule 70 can substitute their key personnel and executives to establish two years of operations experience.
- If the tech startup cannot provide a complete past performance evaluation, they can use their key personnel and executives’ relevant project experience.
- Instead of submitting two years’ worth of financial statements, companies can create a comprehensive plan that displays their financial responsibility in the next few years.
It is important to note that the industry partners are responsible for forwarding the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) requirements. They are bound by the federal, state, local, and tribal government sectors’ technical needs. Upon approval, tech startup companies can gain over $15 billion worth of federal, local, and state opportunities within the IT industry.
Who is Eligible for the GSA Springboard Program?
There are certain qualifying factors that businesses still need to consider when applying for the GSA Springboard program. The program established policies for when the startup tech companies fall short on specific requirements.
Here is the substitute to some eligibility requirements that applies to young companies:
- Tech companies can qualify if their executives and key employees have two years worth of professional experience.
- The past performance evaluation can get replaced by relevant project experiences facilitated by the company’s key players.
- The financial credentials over two years can get replaced by documentation of your company’s responsibility.
After substituting some eligibility requirements, the application for IT Schedule 70 continues as it usually would. The company should still craft a promising proposal that expresses its pricing and marketing initiatives to grow in the industry. Young businesses can seek help from the support team provided by the GSA Springboard program. They can also participate in its forums to reach out to other tech startup companies and share one another’s experiences. It is one way for the up and coming businesses to unite and take advantage of the program’s resources.
What are the Documentation Requirements Needed to Qualify?
Businesses can participate in the GSA Springboard program if they comply with the documentation requirements. It is integral to submit accurate and complete information describing their company, experience, and commercial products and services. They don’t need to print this document because everything is fulfilled and submitted through the eOffer system. All of these documents get included with your proposal and offer.
Here are the steps you need to take to qualify for a GSA contract:
- Compile all the company information along with the proposal.
- Ensure that your proposal adheres to the specific category requirements and the pricing is considered fair and reasonable.
- Attend the training programs required by the GSA.
- Submit all of the documents needed through the GSA eOffer/eMod system.
- Upon evaluation of your offer, expect contact from a contracting officer in case of certain clarifications.
It is also important to note that the program is only available for businesses with SINs under the MAS Information Technology Large Category. The GSA won’t accept offers made under the Springboard program from different Large Categories.
Although GSA established specific measures to streamline the evaluation process, awarding GSA contracts can take up to 12 months. To prevent certain complications that can prolong a contract’s award, make sure to submit the requirements thoroughly. Proposals with concise offerings and competitive pricing can receive results much faster. Following the evaluation, companies negotiate the terms of the GSA contract until both parties agree.
IT Schedule 70 is one of the most extensive Schedules within the General Services Administration (GSA). The IT industry within the federal government spends around $15 billion worth of IT goods and services. Regardless of your startup tech company’s industry experience, there is still a chance to get into GSA. Companies can leverage their crucial personnel’s professional expertise to win government contracts through the GSA Springboard program. Businesses have the opportunity to obtain IT Schedule 70 to streamline the provision of cutting-edge technology across public sectors.