The GSA MAS (Multiple Award Schedule) is the principal mode for government selling, encompassing federal, state, and local government agencies. However, it is essential to note that securing a GSA MAS offer does not automatically guarantee business with the government. Contractors must actively manage and market their GSA MAS offer to open more work opportunities with the government.
Process of Preparing a GSA MAS Offer
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If offerors finally decide to pursue a GSA MAS offer, here is a simplified outline to follow:
- Understand and compile the information and required documents before sending an offer;
- Review your product and service offerings and specialized category requirements;
- Finish required training;
- Complete and send an offer via the eOffer/eMod system; and
- Wait as a GSA contracting representative reviews and evaluates your offer.
In essence, securing a GSA MAS contract involves three significant steps:
The first step in making a GSA MAS offer is to get ready. Before submitting an offer to secure a GSA MAS contract, an offeror must get familiar with MAS solicitation 47QSMD20R0001 first. Furthermore, by getting prepared, offerors must:
- Undergo training to have a clearer understanding of the GSA MAS Schedule contract vehicle
- Complete registration requirements, and
- Accurately identify SINs that best fit their products or services
Assemble Your Offer
Assembling an offer involves two major components: completing the GSA forms and gathering the required information and documentation. For this step, offerors must compile and fill out documents about their company’s finances, experience, products and services offered, and their business dealings history.
Finalize Your Offer
eOffer allows offerors to fill out information, download and upload pre-made templates, sign, and submit their completed offer. GSA contracting representatives cannot access the data within eOffer until the offeror submits their bid.
After submitting an offer through eOffer, the GSA will assign a contracting representative to review your submission. Offerors must work closely with the appointed representative to raise and clarify questions or issues, rectify errors and inconsistencies, and negotiate pricing and other aspects of the offer.
Finally, if the GSA MAS offer is approved, the offeror can now market and sell their products or services to the government.
Tips for Preparing a MAS Offer that can Make the Process Easier
As established, securing a GSA MAS contract can open several opportunities for businesses. However, the process of qualifying and acquiring a GSA MAS contract is no easy feat. The following are some tips to consider to make the preparation of a GSA MAS offer easier:
Understand the MAS Offer Terms & Conditions
Knowing the basics about the GSA MAS contract, including the terms and conditions that offerors will agree upon awarding a GSA MAS contract, can facilitate an easier GSA MAS offer process.
Before securing a GSA MAS contract, offerors must review the MAS solicitation number 47QSMD20R0001 first. This solicitation will provide offerors with everything they need to know about their GSA MAS Schedule contract. More specifically, the MAS solicitation contains the terms and conditions such as provisions and clauses, along with comprehensive information and instructions for offerors. Additionally, the MAS solicitation also comprises all the requirements of an offer, the criteria for evaluating a request, and specialized instructions for each offer, depending on the Special Item Number (SIN). Although seemingly laborious, reading through the MAS solicitation can significantly increase getting a GSA MAS contract.
Understand the MAS Program Regulations
Understanding the regulations, features, and policies surrounding a GSA MAS contract is essential as soon as an offeror begins to look into the MAS program. For this purpose, the Vendor Support Center may be the perfect resource in keeping abreast of GSA MAS updates.
The MAS solicitation enables offerors to know where their company fits against a set of classification schemes, including Large Categories, Subcategories, and Special Item Numbers (SINs) with corresponding NAICS codes. Additionally, offerors should read on the Available Offerings and Requirements released by GSA to establish where they best fit into the GSA MAS program.
Although it is beneficial to research into the MAS program and potential competitors, offerors must do so because it is also a requirement. Before securing a GSA MAS contract, offerors must complete Vendor Education Center’s Pathways to Success and the Readiness Assessment training to ensure that they are ready to submit an offer under the correct Large Category, Subcategory, and SINs. Furthermore, the assigned GSA contracting officer will also determine if the prices an offeror proposes are “fair and reasonable.” By looking into the future competitors’ GSA pricing before entering the contract review phase, an offeror establishes their readiness and shows that they are willing to go above and beyond to better their GSA MAS offer.
Understand All the Components of a MAS Offer
Offerors must be realistic about their employees’ capabilities because understanding all the components of a MAS offer and putting up the offer itself takes considerable time and effort. It is important to note that submitting a proposal requires a great deal of documentation. But, this is not something that offerors should take on alone. To better understand the components and processes encompassing a MAS offer, offerors can consider public sector consulting to help them throughout the process.
Aside from the considerable time needed to assemble a solid GSA MAS offer, offerors must also consider the time frame required to secure a GSA MAS contract as well. The application and awarding process can take up to 12 months, contingent on the contracting officer and their workload. When a GSA MAS contract gets awarded, offerors must also prepare for the impending competition against other Schedule contractors for orders. On top of this, offerors must make sure to keep their GSA MAS contract in GSA compliance.
Essentially, offerors must make sure that they know what they are up for and set realistic expectations and rooms for adjustments to become successful in the government marketplace.
Review Documented Offers with Competitive Pricing
Offerors must take time to prepare their GSA MAS offer to ensure that all aspects of the offer are accurate and correct. Submitting a well-documented request can also create a good impression for the assigned GSA contracting representative, unlike raising an offer put together quickly.
Sensibly, offerors may want to submit their offers as soon as possible. But, more often than not, going slow and steady can earn offerors the GSA MAS contract they want.
Putting up a strong GSA MAS offer is complex and laborious. However, with an entirely new marketplace at hand, these challenges mean nothing to the benefits that await. After all, with the right resources and experts, having the GSA MAS offer approved can be considerably easy.
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