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FAQs - Federal Agencies (Consolidated)


1. How do federal agencies use GSA Multiple Award Schedules?

Answer:  Federal agencies distribute a Request for Quote (RFQ) to a minimum of three (3) Schedule contractors. For more information on schedules, please see GSA Schedules.

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2. What about FAR Section 803?

Answer:  The Department of Defense (DoD) has implemented new rules for ordering services over $150,000 for multiple award contracts. The rules are derived from Section 803 of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2002. Section 803 requires the Contracting Officer (CO) to contact as many Schedule holders as practical in order to ensure that at least three responses are received. If three responses are not received, the DoD Contracting Officer must determine if no additional qualified contractors could be identified despite reasonable efforts to do so. 

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3. How do I place task orders through GSA?

Answer: The majority of ordering offices place task orders directly with the best value GSA Multiple Award Schedule contractor, and are responsible for administration of the task order. The contractor submits invoices directly to the ordering office. 

Agencies can also elect to utilize fee for service contracting support offered by GSA's Assisted Acquisition Services (AAS). AAS can accept funding documents and competitively procure professional services from schedule contractors. Services might include preparing a performance-based Statement of Work, conducting market research, developing/distributing a Request for Quotes (RFQ), evaluating quotes received and issuing/administering the Schedule task order. For more information see the Multiple Award Schedule Desk Reference.

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4. Can I issue an RFQ electronically?

Answer: Federal agencies can use eBuy to prepare and distribute RFQs. Once an RFQ closes, the agency will be able to review quotes submitted by Schedule contractors. The actual award of a task order must be completed outside of eBuy unless the total dollar value of the task order is less than $2.5k. 

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5. Can I issue task orders electronically?

Answer:  GSA eBuy is an online Request for Quotes (RFQ) tool, which enables federal buyers and Schedule Contractors to exchange RFQs and quotes electronically. 

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6. Am I authorized to include FAR clauses on Schedule task orders?

Answer:  Yes, but you cannot change the terms and conditions of the Schedule contract. 

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7. Can I issue Schedule task orders with option periods?

Answer:  Yes; but please indicate that you will exercise your task order option pending confirmation that GSA has exercised the contractor’s option period. 

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8. Can I terminate a Schedule task order?

Answer:  Yes, you can terminate for cause or convenience. Please refer to clause 52.212-4, Contract Terms and Conditions in the solicitation.

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9. What mechanism does GSA use to ensure that contractors are accurately reporting their task orders?

Answer:  GSA has a staff of Industrial Operation Analysts (IOAs) who audit sales reported by Schedule contractors.

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10. Can I include incentives at the task order level?

Answer:  The solicitation specifically authorizes the use of incentives at the task order level. The text of clause I-FSS-60 Performance Incentives (April 2000) details this out.

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11. How do I handle Other Direct Costs (ODC) at the task order level?

Answer:  For administrative convenience, non-contract items can be added to the Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA) or the individual task order if the items are clearly labeled as such, applicable acquisition regulations have been followed, and price reasonableness has been determined for the items. 

Contractors are reimbursed only for incurred costs at or below the published “not to exceed” levels. Costs for transportation, lodging, meals, and incidental expenses incurred by contractor personnel on official company business are allowable subject to limitations contained in FAR 31.205-46, Travel Costs. It is GSA Policy NOT to allow a charge of profit or fee on reimbursable items. 

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12. Can I use the Schedule to fill short-term and/or long-term agency staffing shortfalls?

Answer:  No. Short term requirements are filled utilizing Schedule 736, Temporary Administrative and Professional Services. Long term staffing shortfalls filled by contractor personnel are typically considered personal services and cannot be procured under the Schedules Program.

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13. Can I order labor categories under the Schedule? 

Answer:  GSA encourages customers to describe their needs in a performance-based statement of work rather than to require labor categories that you think are needed to perform the work. 

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14. What does "limited duration" mean?

Answer:  The effort needs to be limited to a defined task with a specific start and end date to the task. No SIN should be used to provide an ongoing requirement for an indefinite time period. 

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15. Where can I get help on writing a performance-based Statement of Work?

Answer:  For Performance Based Contracting regulations, samples, tutorials and guidance, see Acquisition Overview. Additional sources include Statements of Work and Services Ordering Solutions: Avoiding MAS Confusion.

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16. How can I refine my search to a manageable list of contractors?

Answer:  Go to GSA Advantage!® and select the service that fits your requirement. Try the following steps to refine your search results: 

1) Type in keyword(s) in the box under "Refine” by keyword" 

2) Select "Refine"  

You can also prepare a Sources Sought or Request for Information (RFI) notice to solicit responses from Schedule contractors. You can post such a notice on the FedBizOpps website or on eBuy. 

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17. How do I establish a multi-agency BPA?

Answer:  Yes, an agency can establish a BPA that covers multiple agencies. At the time the BPA is established, the Contracting Officer must identify who can award TOs/DOs (ordering authority) against a BPA.  

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18. Are there any training opportunities on Schedules?

Answer: If your agency is looking for training on the Schedules program, there are two types you can get, and both are free. For general training on GSA eBuy and/or GSA Advantage!®, please contact the Customer Service Director (CSD) in your State. Customer Service Directors

For more in-depth training on how to use GSA Schedules, please see the contacts below. The training is CLP-certified and can easily be tailored to your contracting office’s specific needs.

Bradley D. Powers, (253) 931-7171, email:

Daniel Briest, (253) 931-7553,  email:

If you have any questions, please call the National Customer Service Center (NCSC) at (800) 488-3111 or direct your email inquiries to the Multiple Award Schedule Helpdesk at

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National Customer Service Center
(800) 488-3111

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