GSA upgrades purchasing Web site

The General Services Administration introduced new features aimed at streamlining the federal government's purchasing system.

Agency officials anticipate saving time, money and improved compliance with "procurement sourcing and best-value purchase decisions," by improving searching capabilities for GSA Advantage and by redesigning the e-Buy Web site.

The upgraded system now allows agencies to search the Web site by category. Its design has been simplified, allowing easier access to more popular features such as the search function, order status and quick ordering. A password and zip codes are not required to search the system.

Categorization promises to add "dramatic time-saving enrichment to the search experience," a GSA press release stated. "Drill-down browsing by category, improved keyword searching, and powerful advanced searching combined with new refinement and filtering capabilities all translate to a federal buyer's more quickly and easily zeroing in on exact purchase item matches."

According to GSA's Federal Supply Service Commissioner Donna Bennett, the new features comply with the agency's emphasis on the proper use of GSA schedules, also known as the "Get It Right" campaign.

"These enhancements, made in response to requests from federal buyers and sellers, build on GSA's focus of helping customer agencies comply with government procurement regulations," Bennett said. "The enhancements offer a more efficient and user-friendly experience, while ensuring users 'get it right' when purchasing from GSA schedules."

Upgrades to the e-Buy system include a Web site redesign and the removal of the "Award/No Award" buttons to prevent buyers who are just looking for information from being confused.

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