GSA declares strategic sourcing contract open for business
- By Washington Technology staff
- Dec 08, 2014
With a series of bid protests out of the way, the General Services Administration has declared its $1.2 billion strategic sourcing contract open for business.
The Government Accountability Office denied all the protests against the contracts earlier and GSA began promoting use of the Office Supplies Third Generation (OS3) contract on Dec. 4. The contract is part of the Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiative (FSSI).
“In this critical time of reduced budgets, GSA is working diligently on strategic initiatives to include FSSI, the Common Acquisition Platform (CAP), and category management to leverage data, dollars, and good business sense in helping the government buy smarter to meet its goals,” Tom Sharpe, Federal Acquisition Service commissioner, said in a statement.
OS3 provides agencies with a vehicle to buy every-day items, such as paper, pens and printer items. But it is also setting the foundation for more strategic sourcing efforts in other areas.
The contract is expected to boost the amount of spending to small businesses. On the contract, 20 of the 21 awardees are small businesses.
But small businesses that were not awarded spots on OS3 objected to GAO about the contract’s impact on small businesses. The Small Business Administration sided with the protestors. Still, GAO denied the protests in June.
OS3 builds on the FSSI Office Supply Second Generation (OS2) solution, which generated more than $370 million in direct and indirect savings since 2010. It also achieved a small business utilization rate of 76 percent. GSA officials expect OS3 to deliver more savings and increased opportunities for small businesses. They estimate more than $9 in every $10 spent through OS3 going to small business.
“OS3 will help government save money while at the same time ensuring that we are maximizing small business opportunities,” Sharpe said.