FSSI CONTRACTORS UNDERSTAND: DIVERSIFY OR CLOSE
GSA held its kick-off meeting for the third iteration of its office supplies strategic sourcing contract this week and contractors heard the unspoken message loud and clear: If you’re relying on this contract to make you money, your firm could be out of business at the end of the 5 year term. Experienced firms had already figured that out. Whether it’s managed print, IT supplies, or even expanded commercial business, many OS3 contractors understand that they had better find other business channels, or risk their business and the livelihood of their employees. With some GSA officials obsessed about ever-lower pricing, or unwilling to even hear any common sense discussion on Economics 101, FSSI companies must take control of their own destiny. At least one leader has practically come right out and said, “There’s more where they came from” if specific firms fall out. FSSI has shifted from a drive to lower costs to a program where government officials essentially expect companies to give away their products. As OS3 businesses fail, and they will, will other firms come behind them, or figure that GSA is not a business partner that can be trusted?