By: Christina Kacem on November 11th, 2020
How to Maintain Your GSA Schedule Contract: An Essential Checklist
GSA Schedule | Resources and Insight | 6 Min Read
The GSA Schedule acquisition process can be difficult and lengthy - you have prepared and submitted your MAS offer, gone through negotiations and clarifications, and finally received your award. Now that you have a GSA Schedule, your top priority is to generate sales by marketing your products and services and finding government customers. However, you must also be sure to maintain your contract’s terms and conditions.
As a consultant with Winvale, I cannot emphasize enough how important contract maintenance is throughout the lifecycle of your GSA Schedule. If you fail to comply with GSA’s regulations, you risk having your contract cancelled.
We know it can be a lot to balance between finding contracting opportunities and making sure you are keeping up with your contract. So we created a quick but extensive checklist to help you keep track of your contract maintenance obligations.
GSA Contract Maintenance Checklist:
Accepting Mass Modifications
The deadlines and outcomes of accepting Mass Modifications vary, but you should be on the look-out for any updates and accept them in the Mass Modification System as soon as you can. The most recent update to keep an eye on is the MAS Solicitation Refresh #5, which was released in early November 2020.
Updating Your Administrative Information
Throughout the life of your contract, you may have changes to your Point of Contact (Contract administrator, Industrial Funding Fee POC, Order POC, Subcontracting POC), your contact information (phone, e-mail, fax), and your authorized negotiators. You will need to change this information through a contract modification.
Updating Your Contract Offerings and Pricing
- Anytime you need to:
- Add products/services
- Delete products/services
- Make applicable part number and description changes
- Increase Price
- Implement Permanent Price Reductions
You’ll need to submit a formal contract modification just like with your administrative information. Your Contracting Officer needs to approve the request before you are awarded the modification.
Updating Your Commercial Sales Practices
If your contract is subject to Commercial Sales Practices (CSP), it’s important you disclose any updates to your CSP and make sure you do not make your Most Favored Customer discount lower than the price you are offering government buyers. If your commercial customers are given a lower price, you are violating the Price Reduction Clause.
Updating Your GSA Advantage! Catalog
You are required to update your GSA Advantage! catalog at least once every two years, but you should update it more often if your products and services change.
Updating Your SAM Entity Registration
Your System for Award Management (SAM) registration must be updated annually, so be sure to mark your calendar!
Trade Agreement Act (TAA) Compliance
- Have the products you sell had a change in their country of origin?
- Have countries been added/removed from the U.S. Trade Agreements Act?
If you answered yes to one or both of these questions, you’ll need to make sure to reflect these changes and ensure they are still within the scope of the TAA.
Ability One Compliance
Ability One is a program that employs people who are blind or have significant physical disabilities. GSA has a partnership with Ability One, so you must be sure your commercial products are not considered “essentially the same” as the products offered in the Ability One program.
Price Reduction Clause Compliance
Are you maintaining your price/discount relationship with your Most Favored Customer? This is important to maintaining contract compliance.
Contractor Assessments and End of Term Assessments
Before each Contractor Assessment or End of Term Assessment, you should be sure you are abiding by your contract terms and you have all your records organized so these visits go smoothly.
If you have everything in order for GSA, you are likely to have an easier and more productive visit.
The Federal Government requires all employees performing on federal contracts to be verified through the E-Verify web system. You can learn more about the requirements for federal contractors and how to enroll on the E-verify website.
Cybersecurity regulations change frequently in the government, especially if you are a contractor with the Department of Defense. You should ensure you are up to date with the recent changes and you are complying with the minimum requirements.
Do your GSA invoices include all the required information from GSA? The invoicing requirements for most GSA schedule contracts can be found under Contract Clause 52.212-4 (Contract Terms and Conditions - Commercial Items).
Responding to Option Extensions
The extension of your GSA Schedule contract is not automatic. GSA will evaluate whether you have been meeting your terms and conditions and keeping up with your contract maintenance. Expect to file multiple modifications to prepare and expect that GSA will want to renegotiate your contract.
If you are subject to Transactional Data Reporting (TDR), you will need to report your sales monthly. For Non-TDR sales, you will need to report your sales quarterly at the end of a month following a quarter. For example, if the quarter ends in March, you’ll need to report the sales by April 30.
If you have a small business subcontracting plan, you will need to report it on a regular basis. If you have a commercial plan you will need to fill out a Summary Subcontracting Report (SSR) annually on October 30. If you have an Individual Plan, you will need to submit a SSR and an Individual Subcontracting Report (ISR). ISRs are due April 30 and October 30.
Your Veteran’s affirmative action is due annually on September 30.
Your Race/Ethnicity and Gender affirmative action reporting is due May 30.
Be Sure to Stay On Top of Your Contract Maintenance and GSA Updates
Although the list above is extensive, not all requirements are absolute for every vendor. The nuances of your individual company, along with the terms and conditions that were awarded to your GSA Schedule, will determine your obligations as a contractor.
We encourage you to join GSA Interact for frequent updates and attend as many GSA webinars and events as you can so you are well aware of what is going on in the world of GSA.
From the GSA Events page, I would highly recommend registering for GSA’s MAS Office Hours meetings. In these meetings, different topics are discussed each month and it will give you an opportunity to engage with GSA staff, policy makers, and other federal contractors.
As consultants, we provide clarity in a very convoluted process. If you are interested in conserving your level of effort to maintain your GSA contract and hiring a consultant to help you keep track of your contract and maintain compliance, then one of Winvale’s GSA experts would be happy to help you.
About Christina Kacem
Christina Kacem is a Lead Consultant at Winvale. She brings four years of GSA experience to the Winvale team that includes the acquisition and maintenance of both products and services schedules for large and small businesses. Christina is especially proficient in strategizing tactics for the atypical scenarios that all too frequent the current market. Prior to joining Winvale Christina worked as a trade funds manager for a fortune 500 company, customizing plans for retail partners in support of seasonal initiatives. In every professional position she has held Christina has always supported the training and development of new and existing team members.