GSA Designates Printers (and by default, supplies) as Essential Tools for FedGov Teleworkers

Created: April 2nd 2020 By: Steve Noyes

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Updated 4/2/2020 - Through an understanding of the evolving Federal Policies, Clover can help your dealership leverage the largest workplace transition in modern history from the Federal Campus to home-office dining rooms, basements, and spare bedrooms during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hunting for this volume is worth the time investment to set fulfillment policy with Senior Procurement Executive (SPE), Chief Acquisition Officer (CAO), and Purchasing Managers.   In a March 15, 2020 article, Adam Mazmanian, Executive Editor of FCW wrote, “Current data on telework eligibility is hard to come by.  A report  (from OPM) covering fiscal year 2017 states that just over one million of about 2.2 million federal employees are telework eligible.  Of those, just under 470,000 participated in telework during the period covered by the report -- about 21% of all federal employees.”


How the Government Response, Policy, and Guidance Can Benefit Dealers 

GSA is stressing the importance of having Federal employees and Contractors up and running while in their home offices.  Their home office environment should have everything their Agency office had to ensure functionality and security.  Imaging supplies and printers are part of that smooth operation.  Below are polices and suggestions.  


Providing Order Status for GSA Advantage! Orders is Mandatory

Clover is open for business, and positioned to promptly fulfill all your orders. If the order is received by 4:00 pm in any time zone, then we can ship toner, inkjet, OEM and Remanufactured Maintenance Kits and Fuser assemblies on the same day from 12 fully stocked distribution centers.  We can also ship certain models of OEM Printers, and Certified Refurbished Printers while supplies last.

General Services Agency (GSA) has mandated the importance of a stable supply chain. This is outlined on page 41, under the Supply Chain Stabilization section in the March 13, 2020 the U.S. government COVID-19 response plan. If your dealership holds a GSA Schedule, then you are considered part of that reliable supply chain.

Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has designated telework as mission critical. This mandated at-home routine introduces demand for new products, and drop ship solutions.

In an acquisition letter MV-20-05, written on March 19, 2020 Jeff Koses, Sr. Procurement Executive (SPE) for the Office of Acquisition Policy, listed the GSA Emergency Response Product List to Support Teleworkers. All in One Printers (and by default, supplies) are specifically listed “to support sharply increasing levels of telework.”  Explicit guidance for essential products during the COVID-19 Pandemic is outlined on Page 15 of 24, Appendix 1, bullet #13.

Office of Management and Budget (OMB) reinforced OPM’s directive in their March 20 guidance to Federal Agencies. Margarete Weichert, Deputy Director of Management, OMB, stated, "Agencies are urged to work with their contractors, if they haven't already, to evaluate and maximize telework for contractor employees, wherever possible." 

Focus Sales Efforts on these Critical Industries: 

As deemed by the DHS and CISA critical industries will be buying imaging supplies and printing

  1. Department of Homeland Security(DHS) has identified the 16 critical infrastructure industries, listed here. Focus your sales effort on these strategic customers. 
  2. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency(CISA) released guidance
  3. Clarified in the March 19 memo that identifies critical infrastructure industries
  4. On March 28 CISA released Version 2.0Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce” advisory list

Best Practices During the COVID-19 Pandemic:

Successful dealers are modifying their GSA schedules, and/or promoting through the open market option, to sell through P-Cards, and the Micro Purchasing Threshold, to supply small office home office (SOHO) small to medium laser and inkjet supplies.

Clover Imaging’s new SOHO printer and toner bundles offer affordable, plug and play devices that are ready to go right out of the box, and a supply of high-quality Clover Imaging remanufactured toner cartridges. View all of Clover’s high-quality bundled options in https://info.cloverimaging.com/federal-government-teleworkers

Effective March 13, GSA and VA Have Opened Access to their Schedules to State and Local Use Amid Crisis: State and local governments are now able to buy directly from any Schedule from a contractor that has opted in to the Cooperative Purchasing program.  GSA invoked the disaster preparedness and relief feature of its Schedule contracts, while the VA has opened its Schedules pursuant to its authority under the 1988 Stafford Act for emergency assistance . Companies that have chosen to make their Schedule contracts available to state and local customers should anticipate a potential increase in activity.  The ability to sell to state and local Governments can be a big opportunity.

Here are some of the actions that dealers can take to drive sales during these challenging times: 

  • Grow with inkjet - According to KeyPoint Intelligence, business inkjet supplies have the potential to increase your imaging supply sales in the range of 15% to 20%. 
  • Merchandise- The volume generated by SOHO skus can be captured if your customers see those products on your web site, and consider your site as the destination. 
  • Capture the Next Order –certain SOHO inkjet and laser toner cartridges have lower yields and may run out quickly. 
  • Sell with Confidence– Two-year warranty on laser, and one-year warranty on inkjet supplies. 
  • Cultivate the Habit and Promote new Skus - It’s important that consumers know to come back to your site to reorder the consumable. 
  • Maintain the Annuity– Sell your FedGov consumers a printer that takes Clover remanufactured cartridges. 

Sell with Confidence; Leverage the message of Best Value, Sustainability, and AbilityOne: 

Support After the Sale – US based customer service is available from 7 am to 7 pm CST, and on-line through www.cartridge-support.com. Clover can provide robust content, accurate cross references, current images and competitive prices to share with your Contract Officer to feature this sku assortment on your GSA Schedule. 

Helpful Resources:

  1. Register now for the IOPFDA COVID-19 Legislative Update Presentation – Week 3 on April 3, 2020 at 11:00 AM ET. The March 20 and 27 presentations, as well as COVID-19 Government resources can be reviewed by clicking here.
  2. Due to the cancelled Federal Acquisition Service Training (FAST) conference that was to held in Atlanta, GSA is hosting FAST Forward.  This is a free 3-day virtual training event on April 14-16 (same dates) focusing on topics such as Schedules Consolidation, Section 889, and GSA’s e-commerce initiative.
  3. Ongoing GSA educational opportunities are available at https://www.gsa.gov/events
  4. GSA Policy Letter from March 26 offering Guidance re GSA Essential Critical Infrastructure with FAQs: https://www.gsa.gov/cdnstatic/SPE-2020-08%20ext.pdf
  5. GSA FAR & GSAR Class Deviation re Debarring Official Notification to Contractors: https://www.gsa.gov/policy-regulations/policy/acquisition-policy/acquisition-policy-library#ClassDeviations  
  6. Disaster Response Registry: GSA has been getting COVID-19 related capability statements and product offerings from contractors and is directing inquiries to this registry in SAM. https://www.acquisition.gov/disaster-response-registry 
  7. Coronavirus resource: Find out what your agency is planning Updated 4/2/2020

Author: Steve Noyes

Steve Noyes has worked with Clover since 2007, previously worked in the remanufacturing industry with GRC and Nu-kote, and has been in the Office Products industry selling in the Contract / Commercial market, and to the Federal Government / Public Sector since 1986. He has been a featured speaker, contributed articles to industry publications, served as a subject matter expert and panelist at GSA and Industry conferences, serves on the Board of the www.I-ITC.org, Charter member of the GSA Round Table for MAS 75/OS4, liaisons with the www.ISC-INC.org and the www.RemanCouncil.org, and has contributed to the development and specification of Imaging Supply Standards for the www.BTA.org, www.NOPAnet.org and the www.BusinessSolutionsAssociation.com

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