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Common GSA Proposal Mistakes


We work with hundreds of clients each year to help them obtain a GSA Schedule Contract. Sometimes, companies attempt the process on their own before coming to us. We’ve put together a list of some of the most common mistakes companies make when pursuing a GSA Schedule Contract.

Any one of these mistakes could lead GSA to reject your proposal, so take note. When you’ve spent months sorting through the solicitation, compiling information, and piecing together your GSA Schedule proposal, the last thing you want is a rejection notice from GSA.

Don’t Make These Mistakes Getting Your GSA Schedule

☒    Incorrect Special Item Number

In order to obtain a GSA Schedule Contract, your products or services must fit within one of the Special Item Numbers (SINs). Your proposal requirements will vary by SIN, so it’s important to select the appropriate SIN(s).

☒    Poor Financials

GSA wants to ensure prospective contractors are financially stable and not at risk of going under after receiving a contract award. If you’re not confident your company has healthy financials, you may need to wait depending on the circumstances.

☒    Negative PPE

Take the time to reach out to references before adding them to your Open Ratings Past Performance Evalution (PPE) Report. Otherwise, you risk being surprised by negative feedback that will complicate the review process.

☒    Lack of Past Performance

If you plan to offer services through your GSA Schedule Contract, they should represent your core competencies. Save yourself time and don’t try to submit services you can’t substantiate with past performance.

☒    Outdated Past Performance

In most cases, the past performance you submit in support of services must be within the past two years. This goes back to offering your core competencies – if you haven’t provided the service in a year or more, is it really a core competency?

☒    Out of Scope Past Performance

GSA is a stickler for past performance matching the services you propose. This is particularly true when it comes to distinguishing between the IT Schedule and the Professional Services Schedule (PSS). We’ve helped a number of companies resubmit for PSS after being rejected by GSA for scope.

☒    Inconsistent Pricing 

GSA can see discrepancies between invoices, Commercial Sales Practices, and your price proposal template as a red flag – make sure your numbers add up.

☒    Incomplete Proposal Submission

GSA will pre-screen your proposal for completeness before it’s assigned to a Contracting Officer for an in-depth review. If your proposal is missing documentation, it’s automatic grounds for rejection.

Want to Reduce or Eliminate Your Risk of Rejection?

Obtaining a GSA Schedule Contract can be a stressful and complicated process. Our contract experts can relieve the stress and successfully guide you through the process. It’s been our area of expertise since 1986. Contact Us to find out how we can help your company.