Guide to Preparing a Schedule Offer

Although Schedules are the premier vehicle for government sales, including federal, state, and local government agencies, they are not the only option. Getting a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) or Schedule contract does not guarantee business with the government. Your contract will need to be managed, marketed, and you will need to actively pursue opportunities to work with the government. Please take the time to understand the federal market for your product and service offerings. Research how buyers prefer to buy the supplies and services you offer and review other contract options and subcontracting opportunities to understand if Schedules are right for you.

In the following MAS New Offeror Roadmap you will learn how to submit an offer to sell commercial products and services under the Schedules Program. To be considered for a Schedule contract, you’ll need to provide accurate and complete information that describes your company, experience, and commercial products and services. All this information submitted together in an electronic package, through our eOffer system, will make up your offer.

If you choose to pursue a Schedule contract, here is an outline of the process. Offerors will:

GSA will try to award offers efficiently and effectively. However, comprehensive review, potential negotiations, and award may take up to 12 months. Submission of an offer does not guarantee the award of a Schedule contract. Keep the following in mind:

  • Complete, well-documented offers with competitive pricing are easier and faster to review.
  • Getting a contract does not guarantee your company will receive orders. You still need to market your business — see the “Sell” section of this guide.

The links below provide a Roadmap through the offer process. You’ll take these steps to create and submit a GSA Schedules Program offer.

Before submitting an offer to be a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) contractor under MAS solicitation 47QSMD20R0001 there are a few steps you must take to get ready.

This section has three parts: training to help you better understand the MAS Schedule contract vehicle, completing required registrations, and identifying Special Item Numbers that best fit what you offer.

Train

You need to complete the “Pathways to Success” training and the “Readiness Assessment” training, which are both free, web-based courses that help you understand the GSA Schedule Program.

The people in your company who will be responsible for making decisions and signing contract actions related to your Schedule contract should take this training.

These courses will help you identify the Schedule contract that best fits your company’s product and service offerings. You’ll also learn what it takes to succeed in the Schedule Program.

Pathways To Success In Training

This course explains:

  • How GSA Schedule contracts work;
  • How to succeed as an industry partner;
  • What you need to do to be awarded and then administer a Schedule contract;
  • More details about the offer process; and
  • Other contracting opportunities for you.

You will move through chapters, completing quizzes along the way.

Readiness Assessment Training

The “Readiness Assessment” training helps ensure you’re ready to submit an offer under the right GSA Large Category, Subcategory and SINs. It also helps you identify the right Special Item Numbers (SINs), that apply to your offerings.

To complete the Readiness Assessment, you will use online GSA data sources, identified in the Readiness Assessment, to find other companies that provide similar products and services, to see if you can compete with them.

These skills are important to develop prior to having a Schedule contract, so that you can market and promote your Schedule contract.

This training must be completed by a company officer (C-suite, President, Vice President, etc.). This training must be complete before you submit an offer.

Register

You need to register your company in several places before you submit your offer. Complete the registrations outlined below early because it will take time to get the results. You can continue working on other parts while waiting for responses.

D-U-N-S Number

We use the Data Universal Numbering System (D-U-N-S) Number, administered by Dun & Bradstreet, as the unique code to identify your business. Register for a D-U-N-S Number to participate in the GSA Schedules Program.

System For Award Management (SAM)

You must have an active registration in SAM to do business with the federal government.

First, you need a D-U-N-S number to register in System for Award Management (SAM). The name attached to the D-U-N-S number must match the name entered into ​SAM because SAM​ is the official registration system used to do business with the federal government. You’ll use the information you provide in SAM for many purposes, including:

  • Confirm your company meets eligibility requirements to do business with federal, state, local government as well as tribal and educational institutions;
  • Your company is categorized appropriately; and
  • Your company has a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN).

Digital Certificate

The entire Schedule offer process is electronic. A digital signature is required to sign and submit your offer.

We use your digital certificate to verify your identity electronically when you sign and submit your offer in eOffer. You must upload a copy of a digital certificate for each individual with signing rights for the Schedule. This certificate ensures the information you provide is secure and cannot be accessed by others.

You may use the following private companies to get a digital certificate:

  • IdenTrust
    • IdenTrust IGC certificate
    • DOD ECA Certificate
  • Operational Research Consultants (ORC)
    • DOD ECA Certs

Past Performance

For new offerors (i.e., those without a Schedule contract currently), there are three methods to demonstrate your past performance is satisfactory to obtain a Schedule contract award. Please reference SCP-FSS-001 in the solicitation for specifics, but a general outline is below.

Method one is to verify in eOffer that you have three or more Contractor Performance Assessment Reporting System (“CPARS”) reports that: (1) were completed within the last three years, (2) represent at least three distinct orders/contracts, and (3) outline work similar to the scope of products/services included in the solicitation and for which you are proposing to offer. You have the opportunity, and are expected to address, any negative feedback in any of these reports that is not already addressed in the report itself (i.e., CPARS gave you the right to address negative past performance when CPARS initially generated the report).

Method two applies if you don’t have the necessary reports to satisfy method one but you do have at least six customer references. For method two, you’ll need to order an Open Ratings, Inc. “Past Performance Evaluation” and submit your order form and the evaluation report with your offer.

Method three applies to Offerors that cannot meet the requirements of method one or method two. For method three you’ll need to upload a “Past Performance Narrative”, which includes a list of relevant customer references. The narrative needs to explain why you cannot use method one or method two, and include up to five (5) references from customers for whom you have performed work within the past three (3) years that is similar in scope to products/services outlined in the solicitation.

Understanding the Solicitation

To pursue a GSA Schedule contract, you must first understand the basic requirements of the Schedule by reviewing in full MAS solicitation number 47QSMD20R0001. To fully understand the Schedule requirements, you must identify which large categories, subcategories and SINs your products or services fall under. Some product or service groups require additional attachments or information used for evaluation of offers.

The solicitation is made up of several documents that include terms and conditions (provisions and clauses) that will become your GSA Schedule contract. Please read and understand the solicitation, including all large category attachments and requirements before you submit an offer.

The solicitation, including the large category attachments that are part of the solicitation, are our formal request for contractors to submit offers to obtain a Schedule contract. It provides detailed information and instructions, including:

  • Required elements of an offer;
  • Evaluation criteria used to evaluate your offer and determine whether or not to award a Schedule contract to your company; and
  • Specific terms and conditions you will need to comply with as part of your contract.

Instructions and outlined steps on this page do not replace the solicitation and in the event of a conflict, the solicitation controls.

Information Technology offerors: If your company has fewer than two years of corporate experience, your company may be eligible to submit an offer through the Startup Springboard Initiative. Email [email protected] for more information.

In addition, Information Technology offerors may be eligible for the FASt Lane Program. With FASt Lane, offerors get shorter processing times from offer submission to contract award. Please view the FASt Lane website for eligibility and program information. Email [email protected] for more information.

Get Ready

Train

Register

Read the Solicitation

Assemble Your Offer

Complete These Forms

Compile This Information

Finalize Your Offer

Submit Your Offer

Review and Negotiate

https://www.gsa.gov/buying-selling/purchasing-programs/gsa-schedules/selling-through-schedules/roadmap-for-new-schedule-offerors/get-ready