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Best Value is not Black and White.
Maximum competition, lowest bidder out.
BV can be: price, delivery, life-cycle cost, warranty,
extended tech support, trade-ins, special features,
maintenance, past performance, environmental and
energy efficiency, 508, etc.
Agencies need help “documenting” their
justification. Research your agency and your
competition – determine competitive advantage.
Usually used for the purchase of commodities like
commercial off-the-shelf products.
Set of spec’s provided or name brand or equal.
Usually decided by price and delivery.
Generally know what they want, have monies.
Should have relationship with the customer.
Include info on your Best-Value (warranty,
security clearances, in-stock, free tech support).
A Request for Proposal (RFP) is most commonly used to solicit offers for goods or
services that are not easily described in concrete terms.
For instance, when the government cannot adequately draft specifications for a product
or service or when the product or service is experimental, developmental or research
related, the government is likely to solicit offers using an RFP. The government typically
desires more information or a different type of information than it does when an IFB is
Furthermore, as the name implies, elements of the proposal are open to negotiation after
all proposals have been submitted.
Often, contracts that result from negotiated procurements cover advanced technology
and may include complex areas of research and development, projects connected with
highly sophisticated systems, missile programs, aircraft and weapons systems. However,
negotiation procedures also may be applied to more-or-less standard items, when
negotiation authority has been properly documented by the procurement office.
(a) Exchanges of information among all interested parties, from the earliest identification of a
requirement through receipt of proposals, are encouraged. Any exchange of information must
be consistent with procurement integrity requirements (see 3.104). Interested parties include
potential offerors, end users, Government acquisition and supporting personnel, and others
involved in the conduct or outcome of the acquisition.
(b) The purpose of exchanging information is to improve the understanding of Government
requirements and industry capabilities, thereby allowing potential offerors to judge whether
or how they can satisfy the Government's requirements, and enhancing the Government's
ability to obtain quality supplies and services, including construction, at reasonable prices,
and increase efficiency in proposal preparation, proposal evaluation, negotiation, and contract
(c) Agencies are encouraged to promote early exchanges of information about future
acquisitions. An early exchange of information among industry and the program manager,
contracting officer, and other participants in the acquisition process can identify and resolve
concerns regarding the acquisition strategy, including proposed contract type, terms and
conditions, and acquisition planning schedules; the feasibility of the requirement, including
performance requirements, statements of work, and data requirements; the suitability of the
proposal instructions and evaluation criteria, including the approach for assessing past
performance information; the availability of reference documents; and any other industry
concerns or questions.
Open Market Items are also known as incidental items, non-contract items,
non-Schedule items, and items not on a Federal Supply Schedule contract.
For administrative convenience, an ordering activity contracting officer
may add items not on the Federal Supply Multiple Award Schedule (MAS)
-- referred to as open market items -- to a Federal Supply Schedule blanket
purchase agreement (BPA) or an individual task or delivery order, only if-
(1) All applicable acquisition regulations pertaining to the purchase of
the items not on the Federal Supply Schedule have been followed (e.g.,
publicizing (Part 5), competition requirements (Part 6), acquisition of
commercial items (Part 12), contracting methods (Parts 13, 14, and 15),
and small business programs (Part 19));
(2) The ordering activity contracting officer has determined the price for
the items not on the Federal Supply Schedule is fair and reasonable;
(3) The items are clearly labeled on the order as items not on the Federal
Supply Schedule; and
(4) All clauses applicable to items not on the Federal Supply Schedule
are included in the order.
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In 1998, GSA awarded five contracts to provide federal agencies with a new way to pay
for commercial goods and services, as well as travel and fleet-related expenses.
The GSA SmartPay® contracts are effective from November 30, 1998 through November
29, 2003, with five one-year option periods to renew the contract. Awards were made to
five service providers: Bank of America, Bank One, Citibank, Mellon Bank and U.S.
A streamlined purchasing process that eliminates the use of purchase orders and
reduces administrative costs;
An improved payment process that allows fully automated invoicing and
Performance based refunds for agencies based on net charge volume; and
Electronic access systems that allow for streamlined financial operations and
An invitation for Bid (IFB) is most commonly used when the government
desires goods and services that are easily described in exact terms.
Typically, an IFB will include a description of the specifications for the product
or service to be acquired, instructions for preparing a bid, the conditions for
purchase, packaging, delivery, shipping and payment, the contract clauses that
will be included, and the deadline for submitting bids.
The IFB also designates the date and time of bid opening. Each sealed bid is
opened in public at the procurement office at the time designated in the
invitation. Facts about each bid are read aloud and recorded.
A contract is then awarded to the low, responsible bidder whose bid conforms
with all requirements of the IFB and will be advantageous to the government in
terms of price and price related factors included in the invitation. See FAR
FAR Part 13.106 requires soliciting among a reasonable number (generally, three) of
sources to promote competition to the maximum extent practical. Solicitations may only
be limited to one source, if it is determined that it is the only source reasonably available.
If only one source is solicited, the official order file must be documented to explain the
absence of competition.
6.302-1 -- Only One Responsible Source and No Other Supplies or Services Will Satisfy
6.302-2 -- Unusual and Compelling Urgency.
6.302-3 -- Industrial Mobilization; Engineering, Developmental, or Research Capability;
or Expert Services.
6.302-4 -- International Agreement.
6.302-5 -- Authorized or Required by Statute.
6.302-6 -- National Security.
6.302-7 -- Public Interest.
Governmentwide Acquisition CCoonnttrraaccttss ((GGWWAACCss))
A governmentwide acquisition contract (GWAC) is a contract between a
commercial IT service or product vendor and the U.S. government that
consolidates the procurement of IT solutions across multiple federal agencies.
A GWAC is a multiple-award, indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity
(MA/IDIQ) contract, meaning that federal agencies can purchase an unlimited
number of products or service hours under a single GWAC during a specified
period of time.
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Under the Small Business Act, federal agencies conduct a variety of
procurements that are reserved exclusively for small business participation.
These transactions are called "small business set-asides" and include the Small
Business Reserve, Set-Asides above the simplified acquisition threshold, the
Small Business Competitiveness Demonstration Program, the Very Small
Business Set-Aside Pilot Program, and the HUBZone Empowerment
For all procurement actions expected to exceed the $100,000 simplified
acquisition threshold, prime contractors are required to make a "best effort'
attempt to make use of small, disadvantaged, and women-owned small
businesses as subcontractors if the opportunity exists under the contract.
For procurement actions expected to exceed $500,000 ($1 million for
construction), the winning contractor is required to provide the agency
contracting officer with a written plan that establishes a small business
subcontracting goal. The plan details how the winning contractor will make
use of small business in each subcontract category and provide for timely
payments (goals negotiated).
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Contracts to provide supplies and/or services directly with
customers at stated prices for given periods of time.
National (worldwide) account agreement to sell products and/or
services at pre-negotiated fair and reasonable prices, along with
specific terms and conditions.
Volume discount pricing on a direct delivery basis.
Best value selection to meet government needs at the lowest
overall cost (the price of the item plus administrative costs).
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Preferred government purchasing program
GSA Sales in FY 12 were $37.7 billion
Has terms/conditions/clauses incorporated.
Most-favored customer status pre-negotiated.
Products are Trade Compliant.
Satisfactory Customer Satisfaction Survey.
Satisfactory Financial status.
Makes them feel good.
Easier to document their contract files.
WHICH CATEGORIES OF SMALL
BUSINESS MUST BE CERTIFIED BY SBA?
Small Disadvantaged Businesses (SDB),
HUBZone small business concerns, and 8(a) firms
must be certified by SBA.
Other categories, including
women-owned small businesses,
veteran-owned small businesses,
and service-disabled veteran small businesses may
self-certify as to their status.
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Document Conversion Services
Energy Management Services
Human Resources Services
Information Technology (HW, SW, Maint, Repair, Leasing, Rental, Services,
Training, EC, Telecomm, etc)
Logistics Management (LOGWORLD)
Management and Organizational Business Improvement Services (MOBIS)
Professional Engineering Service
Law Enforcement/Fire Fighting.
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Ordering activities to fill “repetitive ” requirements. BPA
provisions are contained in all Federal Supply Schedule contracts
- do your homework.
Does not obligate funds nor commit the agency.
Effectively avoids/limits traditional competition requirements.
Make BPA period the end of your five-year schedule.
Saves agency, time, money and requirement to solicit three bids.
Can discount by product class, SIN, or manufacturer.
Permitted when using Federal Supply Schedules.
All participants of the Team Arrangement must have a
Schedule contractors may incorporate the Team
Arrangement into a BPA.
Ordering activities should follow FAR 9.6 & FAR 8.4
and make a Best Value selection.
Benefit to the Agency: convenience & integration
Each GSA contractor reports own GSA revenues.
Parties determine who will be the “Prime”-won’t get
rich as a Prime – perhaps 1-2 pts from sub-GSA
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A landmark piece of legislation passed last December, the
E-Government Act of 2002, opens a new and significant channel for
selling to states and localities. Section 211 of the Act authorizes the
General Services Administration (GSA) to provide use of its Federal
Supply Schedule for information technology or Schedule 70 to state and
Eligible users would include all 50 states, 3,139 counties,19,365
incorporated municipalities, 30,386 minor subdivisions, 3,200
public housing authorities, 14,178 school districts, 1,625 public
educational institutions of higher learning and 550 Indian Tribal
The updated proposed rules that would govern this new arrangement
were posted to the Federal Register for comments, which are due on or
before July 7th, 2003.
Get on a contract vehicle(s) - keep it/them current.
Determine what makes you unique “Best Value”
Seek Blanket Purchase Agreements.
Seek Teaming Agreements (for products/services you do not offer).
Seed your competition – know your competition.
Know agency budget, mission, use of your services,
Sell “Solutions” not products.
Spend monies on advertising (email marketing, direct
mail, trade shows, publications).
Know the rules and regulations (Federal Acquisition
Stay contractually compliant.
Have lots of patience - need staying power.
Call us @ 703-326-0640 or
E-mail us @ email@example.com