Procurement

GSA launches reverse-auction platform

Thomas Sharpe

FAS Commissioner Thomas Sharpe says reverse auctions save time and resources. (File photo)

Hoping to get federal users even lower prices on common office supplies and IT commodities such as laptops, tablet PCs and monitors, the General Services Administration has launched an online reverse-auction platform.

Officials said the reverseauctions.gsa.gov site, which is available through the Federal Acquisition Service's National Information Technology Commodity Program, will deliver increased savings for agencies on the most commonly purchased office products, equipment and services. GSA officials said they also hope the site will make it easier for small companies to compete for the government's business.

The reverse-auction structure is designed to spur sellers to compete for agency business by lowering their prices. The new platform could also reduce federal agencies' acquisition processing time and costs, improve the transparency and collection of data, and encourage the participation of small businesses.

Sold!

Visit GSA's Reverse Auctions site

"This approach to government procurement can be used with a good portion of GSA's Multiple Award Schedules as an efficient and cost-effective process for purchasing commonly used products and simple services," said FAS Commissioner Thomas Sharpe in a July 9 statement. "Reverse auctions can...save time and precious acquisition resources for both government and industry."

Beyond office supplies and computer equipment, agencies can use the platform to conduct reverse auctions through select schedules and blanket purchase agreements (BPAs) for simple services such as warranties, training and installation. Additionally, the platform will allow federal customers to set aside auctions for small and disadvantaged businesses, thereby increasing opportunities for those companies to bid on government business.

"GSA is doing a lot of exciting and positive things to improve acquisition efficiencies and drive competition, but the new reverse-auction platform hits the ball out of the park," said Jamey Halke, strategic sourcing program manager at the Navy Department.

The Navy is the first agency to use the platform and is already working with GSA to add its own BPAs to the system.

About the Author

Mark Rockwell is a staff writer at FCW.

Before joining FCW, Rockwell was Washington correspondent for Government Security News, where he covered all aspects of homeland security from IT to detection dogs and border security. Over the last 25 years in Washington as a reporter, editor and correspondent, he has covered an increasingly wide array of high-tech issues for publications like Communications Week, Internet Week, Fiber Optics News, tele.com magazine and Wireless Week.

Rockwell received a Jesse H. Neal Award for his work covering telecommunications issues, and is a graduate of James Madison University.

Click here for previous articles by Rockwell. Contact him at mrockwell@fcw.com or follow him on Twitter at @MRockwell4.


The Fed 100

Save the date for 28th annual Federal 100 Awards Gala.

Featured

  • computer network

    How Einstein changes the way government does business

    The Department of Commerce is revising its confidentiality agreement for statistical data survey respondents to reflect the fact that the Department of Homeland Security could see some of that data if it is captured by the Einstein system.

  • Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. Army photo by Monica King. Jan. 26, 2017.

    Mattis mulls consolidation in IT, cyber

    In a Feb. 17 memo, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis told senior leadership to establish teams to look for duplication across the armed services in business operations, including in IT and cybersecurity.

  • Image from Shutterstock.com

    DHS vague on rules for election aid, say states

    State election officials had more questions than answers after a Department of Homeland Security presentation on the designation of election systems as critical U.S. infrastructure.

  • Org Chart Stock Art - Shutterstock

    How the hiring freeze targets millennials

    The government desperately needs younger talent to replace an aging workforce, and experts say that a freeze on hiring doesn't help.

  • Shutterstock image: healthcare digital interface.

    VA moves ahead with homegrown scheduling IT

    The Department of Veterans Affairs will test an internally developed scheduling module at primary care sites nationwide to see if it's ready to service the entire agency.

  • Shutterstock images (honglouwawa & 0beron): Bitcoin image overlay replaced with a dollar sign on a hardware circuit.

    MGT Act poised for a comeback

    After missing in the last Congress, drafters of a bill to encourage cloud adoption are looking for a new plan.

Reader comments

Thu, Jul 18, 2013 Proud American

Jon Hansen - The Reverse Auctions referenced in the VA story is referring to FEDBID not GSA.

Sun, Jul 14, 2013 Jon Hansen

Interesting decision to use Reverse Auctions given that the VA just last year discontinued their use; http://wp.me/p4HrB-334

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group