GSA schedules: Are agencies paying too much?

In a column Steve Kelman recently wrote for Federal Computer Week, he discussed cost savings from procurement at the National Contract Management Association World Congress. Kelman noted that one of the participants commented that many contracting professionals in government simply accept a price appearing for a product or service on the GSA Federal Supply Schedules, assuming, based on their interpretation of the policy of the GSA schedules, that it is the “best price” (or the price given to the “most-favored customer”).

Some time ago, Kelman blogged about a GAO report about how agencies, in establishing blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) off the GSA schedules, frequently did not negotiate discounts off schedule prices, as stipulated in the Federal Acquisition Regulation for quantity purchases.

Because of the urgency of obtaining procurement savings given the federal deficit, Kelman writes about how it’s time for a serious dialogue within government about how the government can obtain better value from the GSA schedules.

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