Jump to Main Content
USA flagAn Official Website of the United States Government
Industry Word

Blogs.Industry Word

Register

Preparing To Succeed With a GSA Schedule Contract

Comment Count:
1

Comments welcome on this page. See Rules of Conduct.

Preparing To Succeed With a GSA Schedule Contract

Published: September 27, 2011 Updated: April 30, 2012

<p>Last year, the federal government spent more than $40 billion through the GSA Schedules program.&nbsp; This year it may well spend even more.&nbsp;&nbsp; A GSA Schedule contract is, quite simply, the easiest point-of-entry into government contracting &ndash; the most effective way to get your products or services in front of the world&#39;s largest buyer of products and services.</p><p>A GSA Schedules contract gives you access to more than 260 federal, state and local government buyers who have an easier time buying from you than they do your competition.</p><p>If you know that, you&#39;ve already applied, or you&#39;re planning to.</p><p>After all, it seems hard to fail once you have that contract in hand. Yet a remarkable number of companies do just that.&nbsp;</p><p>That&#39;s not just a one-time missed opportunity.&nbsp; It can mean the end of future opportunities as well.&nbsp; The GSA requires schedule-holders to do at least $25,000 worth of business through their contract in the first two years they hold it, and another $25,000 every year thereafter.&nbsp; Fall short of that number, and they may terminate your contract.</p><p>Once, that was mostly an idle threat.&nbsp; But in recent years we&#39;re seeing more and more GSA schedule contracts terminated.&nbsp; After all, the GSA, like every government agency, needs to trim its budget right now &ndash; and they pay to administer every contract, whether they&#39;re getting anything out of it or not.&nbsp; It&#39;s no surprise they&#39;re trimming the wasted ones now.</p><p>It&rsquo;s more important than ever before that you make the most of the opportunity a schedule contract gives your company.&nbsp; Thankfully, you can position yourself to do that right now, before you even have your contract in hand.</p><p>A few simple steps can prepare you to succeed one you have your GSA schedule contract:</p><p>&middot;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <strong>Focus Your Marketing</strong> &ndash; There are currently 260 agencies authorized to buy through the GSA schedules.&nbsp; Many of those have more than one authorized buyer.&nbsp; You want to get in front of all of them, right?&nbsp;&nbsp; Probably not.&nbsp; That would be about as effective as asking every girl in school to the prom.&nbsp; You&#39;re far more likely to succeed by focusing your attention on a few buyers.&nbsp; Start by doing some research on which agencies actually buy what you&#39;re selling, and which ones typically buy through the schedules, so that you can spend your limited resources marketing to the handful most willing to listen to your pitch.&nbsp; You can build this knowledge before the GSA has even accepted your contract proposal.</p><p>&middot;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <strong>Build Relationships</strong> &ndash; Government buyers all have one thing in common &ndash; they&#39;re risk-averse.&nbsp; They don&#39;t want to make the front page of the Washington Post for a bad decision made with taxpayer money.&nbsp; With that in mind, they buy from people they know.&nbsp; Once you&#39;ve identified the agencies most likely to buy from you, spend your time trying to build a relationship with the buyers who work there.&nbsp; If they&#39;re familiar with your company before you approach them about a specific purchase, they&#39;re more likely to hear you out.&nbsp; Also, keep in mind that they may start small, and be willing to make a few small sales to get your foot in the door.&nbsp; Once they see that you can deliver, they&#39;re more likely to rely on you for larger orders.</p><p>&middot;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <strong>Market Yourself To Large Companies</strong> &ndash; This one may sound a little counter-intuitive &ndash; after all, you&#39;re applying for a schedule to attract the government&#39;s attention, not Lockheed Martin&#39;s &ndash; but it&#39;s worth reaching out to prime contractors to let them know when your schedule contract comes through.&nbsp; Holding a schedule makes you a more attractive partner.&nbsp; With the government concentrating much of its spending into large, task order-based contracts, teaming is likely to be more important over the next few years than ever before.&nbsp;</p>

About the Author:

Comments:

Above mentioned steps will definitely help you place in a right position to succeed once given a chance to hold a GSA contract. This post gives me a precise idea on how GSA functions. Houses in the Philippines

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to leave comments. If you already have an SBA.gov account, Log In to leave your comment.

New users, Register for a new account and join the conversation today!