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Tag Archives: government purchasing card

Turning Frustration into Opportunity

With FSSI in full swing and many contractors trying to fit the pieces together, one area that is often forgotten but most important is getting paid. While FSSI is requiring that contractors provide Level III line item detail, the benefit that this can provide to the contractor is often overlooked. By providing Level III data, the contractor can save a significant amount of money and reduce the amount they pay to the card companies. This by itself has tremendous value… Read More »

GSA SmartPay Usage Is Down – How Is It Affecting You?

Recently, Mark Amtower showed the statistics in the decrease of spending in the GSA SmartPay program.  Spending dropped approximately 3 billion dollars and 20,000 transactions in FY 2012 compared to FY2011.  Are you suffering from lowering buying from the government?  If so, how do you offset this?  It’s time to look at your expenses.  The first place to look is at your credit card processing expenses.

As discussed extensively in this blog, providing level 3 data can reduce your expenses… Read More »

Government Contractor Lending Programs: Another Arrow in the Quiver for Banks

Many banks, especially in the Washington, DC area, have developed special programs for lending to federal contractors.  These include Virginia Commerce Bank, John Marshall Bank, First Virginia Community Bank, Capital Bank, Virginia Heritage Bank, Sandy Spring Bank, Xenith Bank, United Bank, Access National Bank, Cardinal Bank, Bank of Georgetown, and Freedom Bank of Virginia.  These institutions understand that working with businesses that have the government as their main customer requires specialized knowledge and expertise.

Washington Technology had an article about one… Read More »

The Goverment has their Initiative. Whats yours? Lower Costs.

The pricing in your bids to the government just got a lot more competitive.The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released a memo on December 5, 2012 that outlines the focus of more Strategic Sourcing Initiatives.

As OMB’s Deputy Director Jeffrey Zients notes in the memo, “One key way agencies have saved money is by pooling their spending, either by centralizing the agency’s contracting decisions or by using government-wide strategic sourcing vehicles, in order to lower prices and reduce duplication and… Read More »

Government’s Federal Strategic Sourcing Initiatives Gets More Momentum

A memo released by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) on December 5, 2012 focused on continuing to new direction on federal procurement practices. As OMB’s Deputy Director Jeffrey Zients notes in his Dec. 5 memo, “One key way agencies have saved money is by pooling their spending, either by centralizing the agency’s contracting decisions or by using government-wide strategic sourcing vehicles, in order to lower prices and reduce duplication and reduce administrative costs.” Building on established… Read More »

With Schedule Being Frozen, Don’t Be Left Out In The Cold

In recent news, the GSA has decided to freeze Schedule 75 ending any chance that you may have to get on this schedule.  This news makes it even more important for potential vendors on any schedule.  With the news that the GSA saved over 10 million dollars,  you can be sure that other schedules will be added to the FSSI.  Will you be left out in the cold?

The FSSI only allows a limited number of vendors on a particular… Read More »

The Confusion Behind Level 3

Often times when the subject of level 3 processing comes up, a blank stare and glazed eyes all of a sudden come to life. Many government contractors just don’t understand the nature of how credit card transactions qualify with the credit card processing networks, let alone how the money magically appears in their bank account or how the fees that they are charged for those transactions are calculated.

While Visa/MasterCard Interchange tables, the mechanism that determines how much the card transactions… Read More »

Guest Post — Courtney Fairchild of Global Services

Government Charge Card is pleased to publish the following guest post by Courtney Fairchild. Courtney is the co-founder and President of Global Services, a GSA Schedule consultancy. She has successfully prepared, negotiated and managed GSA Schedule contracts for clients ranging from companies such as Lockheed Martin and Blue Cross Blue Shield to micro businesses with just a few employees.

In the article below Courtney discusses some of the opportunities and the challenges in the field of GSA consulting.

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My firm Global Services… Read More »

No Movement on Government Charge Card Abuse Prevention Act

Last July, the United States Senate passed legislation aimed at preventing the abuse of government purchasing cards. The Government Charge Card Abuse Prevention Act was co-sponsored by Senators Lieberman of Connecticut, Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Susan Collins of Maine.

As we all recall from our civics class in high school however, the Senate passing something is not sufficient for it to become law. The bill, S.300, has not been taken up by the House Committee on Oversight and Government… Read More »

The GSA Quality Assurance Program

In a previous post on this site, I expressed the opinion that much of the resistance to GSA mandates around providing Level-3 processing is based on misinformation and ignorance.

My post generated some comments that basically asked, “Well, what’s your recommendation on how to do it?” Good question!

Usually we’ve provided that information in consultation with clients. Today however I’m sharing for the first time the exact steps we follow with clients to ensure that they are able to become Level-3… Read More »