Government contractors meet to discuss Services MAC platform at a computer
Article

Get ready for GSA’s OASIS Plus

The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) is preparing to release a new multi-agency contract (MAC) to support federal agencies’ procurement requirement for services. Originally referred to as "Services MAC," the new contract vehicle is now called OASIS Plus, and it will provide federal customers a comprehensive suite of services-based solutions with enhanced competition at the task-order level. It is positioned to succeed OASIS when its ordering period ends in 2024.

OASIS Plus will be organized by a set of domains with the overall purpose of aligning industry partners and order requirements. Each domain represents a grouping of related functional areas that encompass multiple NAICS codes. Qualifying for a single domain will allow an organization to meet the criteria for all NAICS codes assigned to that particular domain.

Building and improving upon the success of the OASIS contract, OASIS Plus aims to alleviate friction from the acquisition process and simplify the buying experience for customers; streamline the contract environment for both large and small businesses; and allow for a continuously open solicitation.

During a recent webinar hosted by Deltek, Baker Tilly professionals Leo Alvarez, principal, and Molly Menoni, senior consultant, gave an overview of the new contract, including:

  • Comparing OASIS Plus to OASIS
  • Discussing what contractors need to know regarding the RFP process and timeline
  • Maximizing teaming opportunities
  • Examining the areas of ambiguity that still need to be answered by the GSA

See below for a brief summary of the topics addressed during the webinar.

Part two of the Deltek webinar series is scheduled for Thursday, July 28. The upcoming presentation will cover the latest guidance from GSA, including an overview of Sections L and M from the draft RFP. To attend this session, please sign up to receive an invitation.

Webinar summary

OASIS Plus versus OASIS

Since the inception of One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) in 2014, the contract has generated nearly $50 billion in obligated sales. While many advocated for a carbon copy of the existing program, GSA expanded upon the existing scope of OASIS to create OASIS Plus, an all-inclusive contract vehicle for professional services.

By creating OASIS Plus, GSA hopes to reduce the need to create additional professional services contract vehicles in the future that often take years of planning and result in disputes that take agency attention away from customer needs. Notably, OASIS Plus will support commercial and noncommercial acquisitions and feature the collection of prices-paid data in order to inform category management buying strategies. OASIS Plus will be a Best-in-Class (BIC) Tier 3 contract solution, meaning the contract exhibits certain characteristics on the tiered ratings scale the Office of Management and Budget uses to evaluate agency spend.

What to know about the RFP and its timeline

GSA has conducted an iterative rollout with a number of touchpoints with the industry, including two industry days, 27 focus groups, two requests for information and a solicitation for feedback from a number of leading industry associations and working groups. It has made a concerted effort to provide visibility into its thought process around contract organization, qualifying experience, source selection methodology and pricing.

In its pre-solicitation communications, the GSA published three “Interact” posts. The first, in December 2021, provided a draft RFP with Section C. At that time, the agency revealed that the contract scope would be organized by domains, which were expanded to encompass six new domains. GSA also said it would take a phased approach to the rollout of domains.

Released in February 2022, the second Interact post made clear GSA’s focus to ensure maximum small business participation. Once GSA concludes its additional market research and discussions with industry stakeholders, it intends to solicit and award separate IDIQ contracts under each of the following socioeconomic categories:

  1. 8(a) small business
  2. HUBZone small business
  3. Service-disabled veteran-owned small business
  4. Total small business
  5. Woman-owned small business
  6. Unrestricted

GSA published an Interact post in March 2022, providing an overview of its proposed evaluation strategy. The strategy will include a qualification matrix specific to each domain, and GSA released a sample of the matrix for the technical and engineering domain. Offerors must meet or exceed the designated qualification threshold in such areas as project experience, corporate-level qualifications and applicable business systems and certifications. A scorecard approach will be used by GSA for OASIS Plus. Increasingly, “scorecard” solicitations have become the preferred method for select federal agencies to eliminate offerors from competition that do not meet perceived agency needs. Scorecards weight numerous evaluation factors necessary to secure contract award — from project experience, past performance ratings, business systems, certifications and clearances.

GSA has indicated plans to release the draft RFP in a series of steps to eliminate any confusion and provide a clean final RFP to industry October 2022. Once released, industry should expect 45 to 60 days to prepare responses.

Teaming

With a limited number of contracts to be awarded (at least initially) on each OASIS Plus domain, prospective contractors must prove they are highly qualified in the areas of relevant experience, past performance, systems and certifications. On previous iterations of OASIS solicitations, prime offerors were essentially on their own to score points on their proposal. However, it is expected on OASIS Plus that the solicitation will allow contractors to team with one or more contractors to earn points in areas where they are lacking. As long as contractors stay within the requirements identified in the solicitation, the right capture strategy may be the most important factor in getting your company onto the OASIS Plus vehicle.

If OASIS Plus follows GSA’s most recent OASIS on-ramps, offerors will be able to establish Contractor Teaming Arrangements (CTAs) in the form of a joint venture (JV) or a prime/first-tier subcontractor CTA. While GSA has shared limited details to date around how CTAs will be evaluated, we recommend offerors map their services and experiences to the scope of the targeted domain. If it finds gaps, the organization may need to find a teaming partner with the desired experience.

Conclusion

If the performance of OASIS is any indication, OASIS Plus shows great promise as a go-to contracting platform for federal buyers in the future. If you are a contractor on the fence about OASIS Plus, it might be beneficial to determine how well suited you are for the contract. The sample qualifications matrix provides a great starting point in determining whether you have the requisite projects, past performance ratings and systems to be eligible for award. Regardless of your decision, the contracting community would be wise to continue to track how OASIS Plus develops into the future given how quickly agencies have turned to OASIS over the contract’s short life span.

For more information, contact our team.

Leo Alvarez
Principal
Food factory machine supply chain
Next up

Additional funding available to companies investing in food supply chain infrastructure