GSA Cooperative Purchasing is available to government entities and their affiliates in education through two schedules. Schedule 70 and Schedule 84 are two “contract vehicles” setting long-term pricing on a variety of products for government customers. These prices are great deals negotiated by the GSA and designed to save you money. In addition to buying stuff, you can also request and receive quotes or proposals to install those products from contractors and systems integrators like BCI Integrated Solutions at a pre-negotiated rate.
Let’s check on some of the ins and outs of Cooperative Purchasing to see if you’re included, and how we can help.
What Exactly is the General Services Administration and Cooperative Purchasing?
The General Services Administration is an independent federal agency tasked with helping other government agencies succeed. This primarily includes helping them procure products at lower prices, but they also help manage the federal motor pool, real estate, and many other assets of the federal government.
Procuring products through the GSA means using Schedules, a kind of floating contract that sets fixed prices at any given time. The Cooperative Purchasing Program “allows state, local and tribal governments to benefit from pre-vetted industry partners on a variety of information technology products and services as well as security and law enforcement products and services offered through specific GSA Schedule contracts,” according to the GSA.
So, Cooperative Purchasing is simply a way the GSA provides value to non-federal government entities. The GSA manages Cooperative Purchasing using GSA Advantage! and eBuy. GSA Advantage! is a pricing and ordering system, and eBuy helps you create Requests for Quotes on specific projects you have in mind.
Now, let’s explore who counts as a non-federal government entity, so you know if you can use the GSA’s tools to help your organization.
Who Can Make Purchases Through Schedules 70/84?
A variety of organizations can purchase through GSA’s Cooperative Purchasing program off Schedule Contracts 70 and 84. Those organizations must be government agencies or have government ties, and include:
- The States of the United States;
- Counties, municipalities, cities, towns, townships;
- Tribal governments;
- Public authorities (including public or Indian housing agencies under the United States Housing Act of 1937);
- School districts;
- Colleges and universities;
- Councils of government (incorporated or not), regional or interstate government entities and their agencies; and
- Legislative and judicial departments of the above government entities.
If you meet any of these qualifications, you’re in! You can register with the GSA to use their marketplaces and begin exploring the offerings on Schedules 70 and 84, as well as their other schedules. Keep in mind that other schedules, however, are not eligible for Cooperative Purchasing. Only the products and services on Schedules 70/84 count.
What Products Are Offered Through Cooperative Purchasing?
There are a huge number of products for sale through the GSA Advantage! marketplace and eBuy, an electronic bidding system helping you gather information, find your products, and make requests for pricing to companies. BCI Integrated Solutions can sell products and services related to Schedules 70 and 84. Schedule 70 covers more than 7.5 million information technology (IT) products and services, including projectors, lighting, monitors, and more. Schedule 84 covers security, fire, and law enforcement. This includes access control, video surveillance, system management tools, alarms, rescue equipment, and much more.
These two Schedules make up your opportunities for Cooperative Purchasing. Combined with Blanket Purchase Agreements, the three comprise your government-sponsored pricing benefits as a peripheral agency or organization.
How Can I Identify Cooperative Purchasing Eligible Products?
GSA allows you to filter by Cooperative Purchasing using their Advanced Search, but you can also look for a symbol next to the product you’re interested in. Cooperative Purchasing covers only certain products, and you must purchase them on a state or local government-issued credit card. Remember that you can put requests for quotes together using eBuy from products listed with GSA Advantage!, or you can leave it open-ended and have a contractor recommend eligible Cooperative Purchasing products for you.
Talk to Us Today About Ordering Products and Services Using eBuy or GSA Advantage!
The GSA Schedules offer government organizations and their affiliates an unparalleled opportunity to explore, request quotes for, and purchase cheaper products and services than they might normally receive. BCI Integrated Solutions is proud of its role as an Allegion affiliate, and we’re ready to help you get the security products and installation services you need.
Contact us today for more information about the GSA, Cooperative Purchasing, and what we can provide you.