GSA Launches Phase 2 of Making It Easier

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The agency continues to work on speeding up the contracting process.

The General Services Agency launched the Making It Easier initiative in April to help government improve the way it buys good and services, and after a series of successful programs, the agency is ready for phase two.

Launched today, the next phase adds a slew of new efforts for both the contracting community and federal agencies. They include new quick-start guides designed to get prepare prospective contractors as they seek business across GSA’s many acquisition vehicles; a Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) Modification Improvement process designed to streamline changes in schedule solicitations; and restructured help desks that will give customers a single point of entry.

In addition, GSA planned to release a report today describing the full scope of the Making It Easier initiative, its impact on stakeholders and prospects for fiscal 2017.

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“This second set of improvements will continue to better GSA’s ability to truly make it easier for our suppliers to work with us, and help government deliver world-class services to the public,” said Kevin Youel Page, deputy commissioner of GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service, in a statement. In a call with reporters, Page added that the program’s early success is evidence that “GSA is doing its job as an economic catalyst.”

The Making It Easier initiative already included efforts like the FASt Lane program, which awarded contracts to 108 companies several times faster than previously possible, averaging 31 days. Similarly, contract modifications—such as the time it takes to add services to a contract—is down to two days. Another program, the Startup Springboard, which targets companies that have not previously done government work, has trained 195 companies and lead to five submitted offers and one award thus far. Other previous efforts, such as the IT Schedule 70 road map and the GSA Forecast Tool, will continue to be updated in phase two of Making it Easier, too.

“We are anxious to continue that work,” said Judith Zawatsky, MAS transformation program manager at GSA, on a call with reporters.