Office of Acquisition and Logistics — Federal Supply Schedule (FSS) Contracting
This month we thought it would be useful to provide you with an overview of the changes made to the solicitation package that will hopefully help you navigate this seemingly daunting document when submitting a new or follow-on proposal.
Information on each of our Schedule programs is available online, and provides you with basic information about the schedule along with a link to the most recent solicitation on FedBizOpps. It is important to utilize the most recent solicitation version as they are refreshed on an annual basis. Solicitation refreshments are reflected in the “R” number at the end of each solicitation number. For example solicitation number RFP-797-FSS-99-0025-R8 is the 8th refreshment of the 65IIA Medical Equipment and Supply Schedule. Navigating the solicitation documents on FedBizOpps can sometimes be a confusing process; so this month’s training will help you understand the various documents that are required.
All of the VA’s commodity solicitations have been streamlined to follow a standardized format. Each is composed of the following documents:
Our 621II Medical Laboratory Testing and Analysis Services Schedule has two additional documents: 02b - Statement of Work and 04b - Technical Proposal. In the near future, our 66III Cost-Per-Test, Clinical Laboratory Analyzers Schedule will also follow this format.
Each solicitation document has a cover page which explains its applicability, and a checklist for the Vendor Response Document can be found at the end of the Read Me First document. Some documents require that you read them thoroughly and understand them while other documents require that you provide specific responses as part of your FSS proposal. Be sure to include all required documents in your proposal. Incomplete proposals may be returned to you without consideration.
The solicitation links provided on our website will take you directly to FedBizOpps where you will find the solicitation documents on the right hand side of the web page under the solicitation heading. Although all of the solicitation files appear to have the same title, you can hover your mouse over each file to view the full name of the document. The first link is a single page word document specifying the names of each file contained within the solicitation. The second link is an “All Files“ link which permits you to download all of the solicitation documents in a single zip file. If you prefer to download one document at a time, then you can utilize the remaining links which contain each individual solicitation document. Amendments, if any, will appear as separate files beneath the solicitation files.
Solicitation amendments serve to keep solicitations current with regulatory changes and provide consistency among the various refreshed versions of open solicitations. Amendments can be issued for a variety of reasons. They may be issued to incorporate new or updated clauses that need to be added to the solicitation prior to the next refreshment cycle, or they may be issued to provide corrections or clarifications. They are also issued to incorporate updates (i.e. clause changes, deletions, additions, etc.) from a refreshed solicitation. Amendments are an integral part of your FSS proposal, and all amendments must be signed and returned with your proposal package. During the proposal evaluation process, it is possible that additional amendments may be issued. In these circumstances, you will be asked by your assigned Contract Specialist to sign and return any additional amendments that are issued prior to the award of your FSS contract.