One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS)
Unrestricted Pool 2 On-Ramp

Background

OASIS has helped agencies streamline their complex professional services acquisitions, ultimately enabling them to buy smarter and more efficiently, thus saving taxpayer dollars. As a Tier 3 Best-in-Class contract, providing solutions for complex professional services requirements, OASIS also helps agencies meet their government-wide spend under management goals. Its scope involves many areas of expertise and includes any and all components required to formulate a total solution to a professional services-based requirement. The main areas of expertise include the below-listed categories:

  1. Communication
  2. Compliance
  3. Defense
  4. Disaster
  5. Energy
  6. Environment
  7. Financial
  8. Health
  9. Intelligence
  10. Security
  11. Transportation

OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 has already generated approximately $307 million in obligations since 2014,  and this new on-ramp is intended to expand its use.  This OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 on-ramp was conducted to increase participation, expand competition, and ensure a deep and experienced pool of best-in-class industry partners is available for federal agency acquisition professionals’ use.

At the time of solicitation announcement, OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 had 25 industry partners. The GSA OASIS Program plans to on-ramp 15 new contractors to the OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 to bring it up to an intended minimum of 40 contractors.

Summary Description

The services solicited under OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 on-ramp include: financial services such as certified accountants, tax preparation services, payroll services, research and development in the social sciences and humanities, and other accounting services.

The services solicited under OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 on-ramp include: financial services such as certified accountants, tax preparation services, payroll services, research and development in the social sciences and humanities, and other accounting services.

Pool 2 covers Financial and Accounting Services, and consists of six Core Disciplines:

  1. Program Management
  2. Management Consulting
  3. Scientific
  4. Engineering
  5. Logistics
  6. Financial

Every offeror entering the solicitation had to satisfy the following pool qualification requirements:

  • Submitted projects must be Prime Contracts awarded by the U.S. Federal Government
  • Must submit a minimum of 3 Projects
  • Project NAICS code must fall under targeted pool
  • Must submit the contract documents
  • Must have a minimum Past Performance rating of 3.0 for each project

In addition, the offering company must have an acceptable accounting system in place. Such a system must be:

  • DCAA audit ready
  • Properly separates Direct and Indirect Costs
  • Identifies Direct Costs by Contract
  • Proper allocation of Indirect Costs to Final Cost Objectives
  • Provide for adequate reporting, timekeeping, payment and record retention / data retrieval
  • Provides for exclusion of unallowable costs per FAR 31

OASIS UNR Pool 2 in a Nutshell

Item

Details

Agency:General Services Administration
Office:Federal Acquisition Service (FAS)
Location:OASIS Program Management Office (QSA)
Solicitation Number:GS00Q-13-DR-0001
Contract Period:5 year base period, one 5 year option
Type of Contract and Award:CR, FFP, T&M, LH, Hybrids of any contract type
Number of Awards:15
Contract Value:There is no maximum dollar ceiling for OASIS UNR. There have been notes that the planned obligated value will be between $10-12 Billion.
Small Business Utilization:Size Standard: $20.5 Million
NAICS Codes:541211 – Offices of Certified Public Accountants
541213 – Tax Preparation Services
541214 – Payroll Services
541219 – Other Accounting Services
541720 – Research and Development in the Social Sciences and Humanities
Scope:Six Core Disciplines in Financial and Accounting Services :
1. Program Management
2. Management Consulting
3. Scientific
4. Engineering
5. Logistics
6. Financial
Solicitation Page on fbo.gov:OASIS Solicitation
GDIC Webinar on OASIS Replay:OASIS SB Pools 1/3/4 and 8(a) SubPools (May 1, 2019
GDIC Articles:1. GSA One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) Small Business (Sep-2018)
2. Planning Your Strategy for OASIS: What to consider? (Jan-2019)
3. 5 Key Factors in Your GSA OASIS Win Strategy (May-2019)
4. Pre-solicitation Notice (GS00Q-13-DR-0001) for One Acquisition Solution for Integrated Services (OASIS) – Full & open (July-2019)
5. Why was the OASIS Pool 1 SB rebid by GSA?

Evaluation Criteria

According to the solicitation, the evaluation process will be divided into two phases, where only the contractors that pass the first one were able to continue with the competition. It’s worth mentioning that the requirements for an OASIS award are rigorous and very high. All participating offerors received a self-scoring sheet to assess how positioned they are to win an award and see if they are prepared enough to pass the Acceptability Review.

Below you can find the proposal evaluation criteria and bases for an award. As mentioned before, highly technically rated Offerors at a reasonable price will have a great priority.

  • Phase I: Acceptability Review (Pass/Fail)
    – General / Administrative
    – DCAA Audit-Ready Accounting System
    – Pool Qualification
    – Relevant Experience
    – Past Performance
  • Phase 2: Points Scored (Max 10,000)
    – Relevant Experience (4,000 points)
    – Past Performance at (4,000 points)
    – Systems and Certifications (2,000 points)
  • Final Step: Fair and Reasonable Price (Pass / Fail)

Objective and numerical assessment of technical merit:

  • Relevant experience (40%)
  • Past performance (40%)
  • Systems and certifications (20%)
  • Offerors self-score using pre-established templates and criteria
  • Offers with top self-scores are then validated and adjusted as required

Basis for Award: Highest Technically Rated Offerors with a Fair and Reasonable Price

If Offerors cannot provide sufficient evidence within a Contract or Task Order document or other verifiable contractual documents to substantiate all minimum requirements claimed for any proposal element, their proposal may be subject to removal from consideration for the award.

Problems & Challenges

As in other self-scoring solicitations, preparing a winning proposal for OASIS may seem trivial in the beginning, but as you get familiar with the requirements and the fierce competition there is to win an OASIS contract, you realize there are challenges that you need assistance to overcome. Experience has shown that the main reasons for being unsuccessful in winning an OASIS contract are:

  • Compliance
  • Misunderstanding the requirements
  • Delay in getting proper from COs
  • Not maximizing your score (e.g. through partnering)
  • Not substantiating your score properly
  • Stretching the scores too far (leads to disqualification)
  • Not submitting the proposal correctly through the Symphony online system

Every one of these loss factors are present a serious challenge to the offeror, but the strongest challenge comes from the first one: Compliance. This is where the offerors usually don’t place much importance, but the statistics show that a great majority of disqualifications were based on non-compliance issues.

The next challenge is knowing how to maximize your score, and how to substantiate you claims. Far beyond mere attention to details, tackling this challenge very much rests upon experience with self-scoring proposal system, especially those posted by GSA.

GDIC Solution Methodology

GDIC had completed over 50 OASIS proposals. This was a very valuable asset that enabled us to develop a win strategy for our clients in this solicitation.

Simply put, our win strategy consisted of the following elements:

  • Past Performance was the most important criteria when selecting projects. It is the most valuable assets that a contractor can bring in to win a contract as well, so extracting the maximum quality out of each past project is critical in maximizing the score.
  • Maximize the Use of commercial projects: may companies thought that their commercial project have little value in this solicitation. On the contrary, this presents an opportunity for many contractors who have been very active in the commercial sector an have just recently been involved in government contracts.
  • Maximize your score: Use of the Per-Contract Scoring System and Assessment (GDIC’s “OASIS Self-Scoring Matrix”)
  • Make Full Use of Partnering and Multiple Partners. Finding partners that fill the gaps in your scoring was very important. GDIC helped its clients find the right partner for maximizing their scores.
  • Get Friendly COs to help you with evaluation and proper signature
  • Finally, and most importantly, check and double-check Compliance in whatever we did in this solicitation for our clients

To complement the above win strategy elements, and as with our other self-scoring proposal such as HCaTS and SEC, our solution for OASIS Unrestricted Pool 2 On-Ramp solution that consisted of four components:

  1. Agile Project Teams: we assigned a dedicated team to each client. Each team followed an agile project management methodology, dividing the job into very short tasks and meeting every day to discuss and finalize the results.
  2. OASIS Self-Scoring Matrix: this tool was especially developed for OASIS proposals, and was a great help to both our clients and our proposal teams in identifying gaps and planning and advancing their proposal strategy.
  3. Seamless Client Communication: responsiveness and smooth communication channels between our teams and their clients played a key role in transferring the problems and deficiencies and resolving them in a timely and satisfactory manner.
  4. Compliance Review: To respond to challenges that compliance with the requirements presented, we formed a central compliance audit team to review each proposal at three milestones and make sure the team was on the right track in terms of responding to what GSA asked in the RFP.
GDIC HCaTS Tool

Why GDIC Excels?

General Services Administration is a major source of US government business opportunities in all sectors of industry. In recent years, GSA has been using more of the new contracting vehicle and solicitation evaluation framework called Self-Scoring Proposals rather than  from the traditional proposals mainly consisting of Management, Technical and Pricing section. By getting the contractors involved in the scoring process so that they become better aware of their strengths and weaknesses, GSA hopes that the outcome of this process is higher quality and better managed contracts at lower costs to the government. However, the new system has its complexities, and very few contractors can take advantage of the full potential of these solicitations to secure contracts.

GDI Consulting has been working on GSA proposals for years, and is an expert in Self-Scoring contract vehicles, both from GSA (e.g. OASIS, Alliant, STARS II, and HCaTS) and other agencies (e.g. SEC OneIT) with over 50 proposal completed and many wins. We provide consultation, full proposal development, and also proposal review services at different stages of its development. So, whenever you decide to enter into a Self-Scoring federal bid, let our vast experience bring out the best of your corporate assets and professional capabilities and support you in winning your desired contract.