GSA planning government-wide cloud BPA: What you need to know

By Adam Hyman, Director, Government Programs

Over the past couple years, immixGroup has tracked discussion about the General Services Administration putting together yet a new acquisition vehicle — this time around for cloud solutions. That initial chatter may now become reality.

In 2019, GSA released an RFI seeking industry input on providing cloud products and services in creative solution bundles, to better help customers with their business/technology needs and to save the government money.

This past October, GSA released another RFI related to cloud, making its intent clearer: GSA intends to establish a government-wide, Multiple Award Blanket Purchase Agreement using the following Special Item Numbers (SINs):

  • 518210C Cloud and Cloud-Related IT Professional Services
  • 54151S IT Professional Services, Ancillary, and Order Level Materials (OLM).

This latter category will cover Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), Software as a Service (SaaS), and Cloud-Related Information Technology (IT) Professional Services.

The BPA would consist of three independent primary pools with respective independent sub-pools. Each primary pool and sub-pool would be independently evaluated and awarded. 

  • Pool 1 would include IaaS and PaaS
  • Pool 2 would include SaaS
  • Pool 3 would include Cloud Professional Services

Each pool would have sub-pools that, at this point, outline GSA’s speculative award strategy, as well as minimum qualifying criteria. Of course, this could change between now and when the actual RFQ drops.

The timeline for this acquisition is ambitious. An RFQ release is planned for December 2021, with awards made in January 2022. While it’s possible that this acquisition won’t actually be released until sometime in the first quarter of 2022, it’s still advisable to start preparing early.

To respond to the anticipated RFQ, you will need to meet the following criteria:

  • A GSA MAS contract that holds, at a minimum, the applicable SINs as noted above
  • At least ten years remaining on that contract.

If your contract doesn’t have ten years remaining (including option years), you must have submitted a GSA eOffer by November 15, 2022 (per a Supplemental Notice directly from GSA that was posted on the eBuy portal on November 4, 2021). GSA didn’t give contract holders, especially those who hold large contracts, much time to get this done. However, our guess is that so long as you have your new contract in place by the time responses to the RFQ are due, you will be in good shape.

Any cloud offerings intended to be part of this BPA must fall under the applicable SINs as noted above. If your SaaS, PaaS, and or IaaS is currently listed under another SIN (for example, 511210 “Software Licenses”), those offerings likely will need to be migrated over.

That’s not as simple as an administrative request to your GSA contracting officer. Any cloud to be offered under the cloud SIN must meet the NIST definition of Cloud Computing, and must also meet certain technical requirements. This is all to be supported by a technical write-up that must be reviewed and evaluated by the GSA cloud technical team.

There are many unknowns about this potential BPA that GSA will need to address, while still allowing sufficient time for response. Will teaming be allowed? Will GSA allow more flexibility when it comes to invoicing for cloud (advance payment as well as pay-as-you-go)? 

Stay tuned. This will certainly be an interesting one to watch unfold.

For more information about this opportunity, please reach out to the immixGroup GSA team at GSAteam@immixgroup.com.

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About Adam Hyman
Adam Hyman is responsible for the overall management and compliance of acquisition contract vehicles held by immixGroup, such as GSA Schedule 70, NASA SEWP V, NETCENTS-II, ESI BPAs and a variety of others including state and local contracts. Hyman brings more than fifteen years of experience in contract administration and program management in the public sector marketplace. He has a B.B.A. in management from American Intercontinental University.

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