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dkubis

Negotiate GSA Pricing

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I know you can ask for discounted pricing from GSA Scheduled contractors but can you actually negotiate with them? Let's say we put out an RFQ and we get quotes in, can we then start negotiating with one of the vedors? How does one "negotiate" better pricing with GSA vendors?

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You would start by doing some homework. Not sure what you are buying, but checking a schedule holders "pre-negotiated" pricing up against the marketplace can often yield some very interesting results. Are you buying a high volume of something? This can be used to obtain a discount. As you can see, digging into the pricing and communicating such to a schedule holder for the purposes of obtaining a discount really is negotiation on the price aspect of what you are buying.

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Just putting out an LPTA RFQ. I don't see how you can go back and adjust pricing after the quotes come in. How you can pick one vendor out of all the quotes you got and encourage them to lower their price to make sure they're lower than the lowest price that came in? I'd understand if they quoted their scheduled prices but knowing there's competition the should put their best price forward. We could give out estimated quantities in the RFQ I guess to improve the volume discounting.

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dkubis -

Just some rhetorical questions for you to consider…

Why are you doing a LPTA RFQ? Have you read FAR 8.404(a)?

Why are you not using these? Reference - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/category/100623

Where in FAR in 8.405-4 does it say that when seeking a discount you cannot “negotiate”?

Is getting “concessions” from a contractor negotiation? Reference - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/200397

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You can negotiate better pricing with a GSA contractor just as you would with any other contractor. In doing a FAR Part 8 acquisition, you are not tied to the restrictive definitions of "discussions" or "clarifications" as you are with Part 15, so I would recommend negotiating your heart out. I would always be mindful to be fair to all offerors/bidders and to be in accordance with your RFQ/RFP, but I see nothing that would stop you from negotiating a better price for the government.

In fact, per FAR 8.405-4, if the amount is over the SAT, you're required to seek additional discounts.

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Guest Jason Lent

You can negotiate better pricing with a GSA contractor just as you would with any other contractor. In doing a FAR Part 8 acquisition, you are not tied to the restrictive definitions of "discussions" or "clarifications" as you are with Part 15, so I would recommend negotiating your heart out. I would always be mindful to be fair to all offerors/bidders and to be in accordance with your RFQ/RFP, but I see nothing that would stop you from negotiating a better price for the government.

In fact, per FAR 8.405-4, if the amount is over the SAT, you're required to seek additional discounts.

I'm of the understanding that "seeking additional discounts" isn't the same as negotiating, at least as far as the FAR is concerned (such as in a formal context). Short of asking for better prices, I don't think you are actually *negotiating*, so to speak. FAR 15 is where you get your authority to negotiate, which doesn't apply to Federal Supply Schedules, per FAR 8.404(a).

EDIT: I think the most concrete part of the argument that seeking discounts =/= negotiating is that you don't establish a "pre-discount request objective".

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I'm of the understanding that "seeking additional discounts" isn't the same as negotiating, at least as far as the FAR is concerned (such as in a formal context). Short of asking for better prices, I don't think you are actually *negotiating*, so to speak. FAR 15 is where you get your authority to negotiate, which doesn't apply to Federal Supply Schedules, per FAR 8.404(a).

EDIT: I think the most concrete part of the argument that seeking discounts =/= negotiating is that you don't establish a "pre-discount request objective".

You are correct in that you do not have to establish a POM, however we are merely getting into a terminology discussion as to whether seeking additional discounts constitutes "negotiating" or not. In my opinion, if you are attempting to get a contractor to lower their pricing beyond what is originally offered, you are negotiating no matter what you call it.

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dkubis -

Just some rhetorical questions for you to consider…

Why are you doing a LPTA RFQ? Have you read FAR 8.404(a)?

Why are you not using these? Reference - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/category/100623

Where in FAR in 8.405-4 does it say that when seeking a discount you cannot “negotiate”?

Is getting “concessions” from a contractor negotiation? Reference - http://www.gsa.gov/portal/content/200397

Culham,

Where does it state in FAR Paragraph 8.404(a) that the use of LPTA is strictly prohibited?

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Prezmil2020 - Where did I state that use of LPTA is strickly prohibited?

My post of questions was to have dkubis think about the solicitation format in the context of the intended need and the expressed want by dkubis (by my read) to negotiate better pricing.

To help explan further see this reference http://www.gsa.gov/portal/mediaId/156399/fileName/GSA_FAR84vs13_15_StudentGuide_Fall2012 and specifically the “Nuts and Bolts” tip found on page 10 which by expereince is a true statement. I would offer that using a process that follows FAR 8.4 and further advice from GSA as evidendenced by this reference,http://www.gsa.gov/portal/category/100623

which I already posted presents less risk when anticipating negotiation with a FSS holder.

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