GSA Contract Spending – Top 10 Tips for the Last 4 Weeks

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We are now down to the last days of fiscal year 2014 where every dollar needs to be spent by 11:59 Hawaiian time on September 30th. From here on out bids, quotes and RFPs will be quick turn – often less than 48 hours from time of release to time due. This means you better be paying attention to what is coming or you will miss it.

What can you do to win in this September buying frenzy?

Tip 1 – Be ready. Make sure your team is aware that GSA contract orders can come anytime. Forward emails to multiple accounts and have a response system so you can let everyone know who is handling what.

Tip 2 – Forward your GSA contact number to cell phones. With today’s VOIP phone systems, you can have any number ring to a bunch of phones at the same time. When the CO calls, you want someone to pick up that phone.

Tip 3 – Monitor emails. Many of the last minute deals will be competed between 3 GSA contract holders. If you have been doing your business development all year, you should be one of them but that doesn’t mean you will automatically win. You need to be watching and ready to respond.

Tip 4 – Check your junk mail. So many emails are flying around that you might miss one that is really important. Make sure you check your junk mail several times a day.

Tip 5 – Monitor GSA eBuy constantly. During the lean months, GSA eBuy might see 3 new opportunities per week. Depending on your GSA contract number, in September we are seeing as many as 3 new postings per minute.

Tip 6 – Forward your fax number to email. There are many services out there that can change your fax into an email attachment. Since a lot of opportunities will only have a 48 or even 24 hour window for response, this can mean the difference between winning and losing.

Tip 7 – Weekend Watch. 7 years ago we missed a GSA contract opportunity that was released on a Sunday at 11am and due on Monday at 11am. Don’t let this be you!

Tip 8 – Redundancy. When in doubt, add another person in your monitoring/phone chain to keep from missing opportunities.

Tip 9 – Last Night Watch. 11:29 Hawaiian time on September 30th will be the last contract executed in 2014. That is 5:59 EST. It would be a bummer to wake up at 6 AM EST and see that there was an order that needed to be signed a minute ago.

Tip 10 – Double check your response. While there is a lot of leeway in September responses (CO’s will generally give you the chance to add missing information), do your best to respond with complete submissions. Make sure standard forms are signed and the appropriate check-boxes are checked.

Good luck with your last minute GSA contract deals! Please join me for a the last webinar of FY2014 where we will review the last minute strategies for winning. Register here: “Drive GSA Webinar” we will be discussing what happens in September and what you can do about it.

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