The General Services Administration (GSA) introduced the Formatted Product Tool (FPT) to the GSA Schedules Program in the summer of 2016. FPT automates price comparisons for identical products by standardizing Manufacturer Part Numbers (MPNs), UPC-A data, and product descriptions when applicable.
FPT shouldn’t be confused with Transactional Data Reporting (TDR), which was also unveiled around the same time. TDR requires companies to report the prices paid for GSA Contract items. In exchange, TDR eliminates the need to track the Basis of Award (BOA) and Price Reductions Clause (PRC).
FPT helps companies identify pricing outliers, automates some of GSA’s market research, and allows government buyers to easily compare identical products. While FPT does not relieve companies of the BOA and PRC requirements, it does eliminate the need for separate GSA Advantage! upload. With FPT, a company’s GSA Advantage! listing is uploaded automatically when the proposal or modification is approved.
Who Does FPT Affect?
FPT only affects companies that currently hold or are looking to obtain one of the GSA Schedules listed below. New contractors are required to participate in FPT, but companies that held a Schedule 72, 58 I, or 66 Contract before FPT was released can decide if they would like to participate in the program.
- GSA Furnishings & Floor Coverings Schedule 72 | July 2016
- GSA Professional Audio/Video Schedule 58 I | July 2016
- GSA Scientific Equipment & Services Schedule 66 | December 2017
Notes for Existing GSA Schedule Contractors
Keep in mind, participation in FPT is optional for existing GSA Schedule Contractors. If you choose to accept FPT, you are required to submit a Capture Formatted Pricing, or baseline, modification within 60 days. A baseline modification involves uploading your current GSA Schedule catalog to the FPT module in GSA eMod.
As with future modifications, FPT will generate a report with standardized part numbers and flag pricing outside of the established range. Before submitting the modification to your CO, you can accept FPT’s identification of part numbers or provide a note explaining why the identification is not correct. You’ll also have the option to adjust pricing (up or down) to fall in line with established pricing. For a more detailed look at the process, see our original posting on the Formatted Product Tool here.
The Future of GSA’s FPT
GSA has repeatedly maintained that FPT is here to stay and will be rolled out to all GSA Schedules in the future. However, GSA’s initial implementation plan stalled for a year and then changed fairly significantly. After releasing FPT to Schedules 72 and 58 I in July of 2016, the program was then supposed to roll out to Schedules 73, 75, 51 V, and 70 at two-week intervals. Those subsequent GSA Schedules never received FPT. In October of 2017, GSA announced they were resuming implementation with the Scientific Schedule 66. On December 21, 2017 the solicitation for Schedule 66 was refreshed to incorporate FPT and existing contractors received an email notifying them of the Formatted Product Tool Mass Modification A510.
Need Help With FPT?
Federal Schedules, Inc. has been helping companies obtain and manage their GSA Schedule Contracts since 1986. This includes, staying up to date on the latest changes at GSA and helping companies understand how changes potentially impact their contract. Whether you would like to discuss the benefits of participating in FPT or need assistance with your FPT baseline modification, we can help. Contact us online or at 703-709-8700.