The General Services Administration is looking to update the Multiple Awards Schedules, the large catalog of government contracts. The agency is concerned that the catalog does not reflect the fact that many federal agencies conduct bulk-purchasing contracts, and thus the GSA Online Catalog was born. The digital era has changed the nature of government contracts and anyone can access the catalog with the click of a mouse.
“We can really even ask some bigger meta questions about what is the role of the schedule in an environment in which you can have digital access to multiple-award vehicles across the government,” GSA Administrator Dan Tangherlini said at a conference.
A digital portal is being created by the GSA. Called the Common Acquisition Platform, the program allows government contractors to identify potential opportunities and connect with government procurement officials. GSA Online also means that contractors can also compare similar contracts with the federal government.
The changes come at a time when it is becoming more challenging to be awarded a government contract. Between 2010 and 2013, contracts on the top ten supply schedules fell from $22.4 billion to $17.6 billion.
The agency is looking for feedback from contractors as it looks to improve the federal government contracting system. It wants to know what works and what doesn’t work and “what are the things that drive you crazy that we need to get out of?”
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