Input predicts GSA schedule decline

Agencies are turning to other contract vehicles for information technology purchases and are less likely now to use the General Services Administration’s multiple award schedule contracts, according to research and consulting firm Input.

The firm predicts that money spent through GSA's IT schedule will drop by a total of 1 percent in fiscal 2006, to about $16.3 billion. That includes a 5 percent drop in the use of the schedule for IT services procurement, and it marks the second consecutive year of decline.

“Overall federal IT spending continues to grow at an attractive pace, so the decline in Schedule 70 spending reflects a conspicuous move by buyers to other contract vehicles,” said Ashlea Higgs, manager of new markets at Input. “The drag created by slipping IT services sales will be a surprise to some observers since lower equipment sales were the culprit last year.”

Input charted a 2 percent drop in use of the IT schedule in fiscal 2005. Rising competition from department-specific multiple-award contracts, one the key factors influencing the schedule performance, is not expected to diminish any in the near future, according to Input's analysis.

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