This week, the Coalition for Government Procurement’s Pricing and Regulatory Compliance Oversight (PRCO) Committee met with the General Services Administration (GSA) to discuss the ongoing implementation of the Order Level Materials (OLM) final rule. As many of you know, the Coalition has been a longstanding advocate for the inclusion of OLMs into the Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) program.
The Coalition thanks Mark Lee, Assistant Commissioner for Policy and Compliance; Stephanie Shutt, Director of the Multiple Award Schedule (MAS) Program Management Office; and Steve Hutchinson, Branch Chief for the Office of Policy and Compliance. The engaging discussion and thoughtful commentary were sincerely appreciated by the Coalition and its members.
The OLM rule is a game changer! The incorporation of OLMs provides GSA with a fantastic opportunity to further streamline the MAS Program, reduce incentives for agencies to establish duplicative contracts, and minimize burdens for Government and industry. In addition, the rule brings increased contract flexibility to meet customer agency needs for integrated, commercial solutions.
The Coalition cannot overstate the value that our members derive from opportunities, like this week’s meeting. Moving forward, training and outreach initiatives will be crucial to supporting a sound, market-wide adoption and use of OLMs. Effective outreach and training provides customer agencies and industry with an opportunity to ensure that they understand how to best utilize this new tool and maximize its potential benefits. Further, training and outreach facilitate consistency in GSA’s communications, which is critical to preventing confusion and spreading awareness.
Along these lines, the Coalition believes that GSA should eventually expand its application of the OLM rule into MAS contracts on a Schedule-wide basis. There is no policy or business imperative that would be served in limiting the applicability of the new rule to a subset of Schedules. Indeed, this limitation only enhances the potential for misunderstanding, and it reduces the potential positive impact for the entire MAS program.
OLMs are a great step forward for the MAS program. We are confident that GSA will continue its focus on improving the MAS program, and, in this regard, the Coalition looks forward to working with all stakeholders on this effort.