GSA Schedule FAQ
What is a GSA Schedule | How to Get a GSA Number
GSA stands for the General Services Administration which is a centralized authority for the acquisition and management of federal government resources. While GSA manages historical properties, government-owned and leased buildings, and fleets of government vehicles, it is most widely known for its development of the Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) Program. The purpose of the Schedules Program is to leverage the buying power of the federal government in order to negotiate streamlined contracts with commercial businesses.
GSA Schedule Contracts, also known as Federal Supply Schedules, are indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ), long-term contracts under the General Services Administration's Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) Program. GSA Schedule Contracts were developed to assist federal employees in purchasing products and services, and contain pre-negotiated prices, delivery terms, warranties, and other terms and conditions.
Contractors who successfully receive a GSA Schedule Contract Award after going through a lengthy proposal process are assigned a GSA Contract Number. For more details see, Getting on the GSA Schedule.
Acquisitions through GSA Schedules are issued using full and open competition. Prices have already been deemed fair and reasonable, and Contracts are in compliance with all applicable laws and regulations, reducing evaluation cycles. Purchases can be made directly from a contractor's GSA Schedule Contract, eliminating time-consuming responses to complex RFP’s and lengthy negotiations.
A GSA Schedule Contract can be used to solicit hundreds of federal customers, including:
GSA awards Schedule Contracts to responsible companies that offer Commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) products and services falling within the descriptions of the Schedules. Combined, the GSA Schedules are a comprehensive, categorical offering of almost every product and service available. To date, there are over 11 million commercial products and services available through the GSA Schedules.
There are, however a few products and services that are restricted from the Schedules Program. Currently firearms and ammunition, as well as construction and architectural services are not allowed on the GSA Schedule. While it is unlikely that firearms and ammunition will ever be permitted on the GSA Schedule, there has been recent talk of adding construction services to the program. In the meantime, there are some aspects of construction and architectural services that may fall under the scope of Schedule 871, Professional Engineering Services.
There is no law that requires a contractor to hold a GSA Schedule in order to conduct business with the federal government. However, many agencies will only place orders through GSA Schedule Contracts. As a result, companies that conduct significant business with the federal government ultimately find it necessary to obtain a Schedule Contract.
The qualifications needed to obtain a GSA Schedule Contract vary slightly from Schedule to Schedule. However, for the most part a company must meet the following criteria: