The General Services Administration has partnered with the Department of Veterans Affairs to make it easier to for the agencies to find veteran-owned vendors on acquisition supply schedules.
The pair signed a memorandum of understanding July 10 to provide verified service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses and veteran-owned small businesses listed in VA’s verified vendor database more clear designations on GSA’s VA Advantage list.
VA Advantage catalogs GSA-approved veteran contractors offering services on the agency’s supply schedules. The new MOU will provide VOSBs with a special icon to designate their verified status on VA Advantage.
“Gaining verified VA VIP status provides access to important resources for Veteran-owned businesses,” acting Deputy Commissioner of GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service Mary Davie said in a statement. “The MOU provides VIP Veteran contractors with valuable increased visibility to vendors through GSA’s VA Advantage.”
Per a 2016 department procurement policy, the VA must reserve procurements for competition “if a contracting officer has a reasonable expectation that two or more small businesses owned and controlled by veterans will submit offers,” which can be made for a fair and reasonable price, also known as the Rule of Two.
Officials said the goal of the MOU was to make it easier for VA contracting officers to identify two veteran-owned small businesses that could potentially fulfill those procurement requirements.
“The VA and GSA have a longstanding partnership working on improving acquisitions,” Jan Frye, VA deputy assistant secretary for acquisition and logistics, said in a statement. “This new icon program enhances the collaboration between our agencies and makes it easier for the VA workforce to meet their mission and make sound purchasing decisions.”
Veteran-owned businesses will only be eligible for the designation if they have been verified through the agency’s Vets First Verification Program.