GSA released GSA Express, a new acquisition channel using the Commercial Solutions Opening (CSO) procedures. GSA Express will look to align agencies needs for “innovative commercial items, including products, technologies, and services” through a less-restrictive and less-formal competitive process. Express estimate the award process at 30-120 days using templates and centralized acquisition support; where solicitations with statements of work can take months or years. The procurement begins by identifying agency need, then requesting white papers or solution briefs from industry. GSA will use the needs and briefs to develop a solicitation and request a full proposal.

As the emphasis is on innovative solutions, the idea is to provide agencies access to new technologies from young and nontraditional government companies with little or no experience working with the federal government. Express will encourage use of the traditional schedule, GWACS, and BPAs; but will not require its use. The CSO will emphasize value and merit over pricing and provide contracting officers flexibility to determine contracting vehicle

Further, CSO’s allow agencies and companies to negotiate terms for cancellation and removes the opportunity for protests.

There are no current solicitations available, but there are 28 opportunities begin developed between GSA Express and Agencies customers

Until there are posted opportunities, there are not registrations, but you may request a briefing with the GSA express team. We encourage you to attend federal trade shows and conferences to meet with decision makers and share your innovative solutions.

Key Information:

A White Paper/Solution Brief will be specific to the need, but should include title page, solution concept, and company viability. See GSA’s explanation here: https://aas.gsa.gov/express/solutions.

GSA Express explains their process as 4 steps:

  1. We solicit commercial solutions that address current needs of Agency clients.
  2. When there is an open area of interest, you can respond to compete for the opportunity by submitting a brief about your solution.
  3. If we are interested in learning more about a solution, we may invite you in for an oral presentation or invite you to submit more information to us about your solution.
  4. If we think there’s a good match between your solution and our client’s requirements, we’ll invite you to provide us with a full proposal — this is the beginning of negotiating all the terms and conditions of a proposed contract.

GSA Express defines Innovative as

  1. Any item that is—
    1. A new technology, process, or method as of the date of submission of a solution brief; or
    2. A new application or adaptation of an existing technology, process, or method as of the date of submission of a solution brief.
  2. Includes existing items within the production/commercialization phase (i.e. after design or development, and before widespread government or commercial adoption) as well as new adaptations of existing commercial items.

CSO Guide Book: https://www.gsa.gov/cdnstatic/PIRC%20CSO%20Guide%206818.pdf

Other sources: https://www.govexec.com/excellence/promising-practices/2018/05/all-agencies-can-now-buy-innovative-tech-shark-tank-speed/148456/

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Dan Coley

Dan Coley

Vice President for Coley Government Contracting Services, Dan leads the day-to-day Consulting Practice. He has more than a decade of experience with the acquisition, management, and marketing of Federal, State, and Local government contracts. Daniel specializes in all aspects of GSA Schedules management and marketing and has helped hundreds of Coley clients remain compliant with the terms of their GSA contract while helping them expand their business.

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