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BPAs are a way for you to win an empty bucket, then fill it with related contracts you won’t have to compete for.

Photo of a pile of rolled up blanketsBlanket purchase agreements (BPAs) are a convenient way for federal agencies to fill recurring orders for supplies and services. BPAs save time and costs because there’s no need to go through the whole selection and procurement process.

A BPA is a task order under a Multiple Award Schedule (like IT70 or MOBIS), that is a tasker that can be used like a “charge account” for a federal agency to use money from their budget to apply to IDIQ task orders.

The biggest benefit of BPAs for contractors is that it allows the customer to keep issuing tasks to you, without any competition. And because it’s a sub-agreement under the multiple award schedule, your customer, and any other customer in a connected or qualified circumstance (a related customer, someone from another agency who does a similar job), can add money to the ceiling (limit) of the BPA.

In other words, there’s no limit to the limit.

You can win a BPA for $10 million but end up earning a lot more money, depending on whether other customers bring work to your BPA. It’s a matter of an agency being willing to move money from their budget to your BPA vehicle.

For example, let’s say you win a BPA contract under your IT70 multiple award contract with GSA with U.S. Customs & Border Protection for $10 million. Now, here comes the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services who wants you to also do work for them, and they say to CBP, here’s my $10 million, so now your ceiling can be increased to $20 million.

You’re doing the work you originally contracted for, plus you’re doing the work for another sub-agency. As long as it’s the same scope (there are stringent rules about that), it can be added to the same BPA and your limit can be increased.

BPAs are a way for you to win an empty bucket, just like you would do on a multiple award IDIQ, except that you’re not competing with other people.

This is an overly simplistic explanation and of course you’ll need to get familiar with all the issues, rules and complications, but I hope it’s enough to get you excited about the possibility!

The most important thing that will go into your BPA is a statement of work, that’s the core value you bring to the customer. Also consider offering a discount to make this option more attractive for the agency – besides all the time it will save. Above all, be sure to follow the precise BPA format and know all the requirements.

More information, including a template in Microsoft Word, is available from the GSA website.

GSA recently did a webinar about BPAs – visit their site to browse and sign up for future training events.

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