A free (agency branded) version of GovernmentFormsSoftware® (GFS) is made available to all participating firms/consultants via a download from the agency web site.
With over 5,000 users nationwide, GFS is already the industry standard for electronically producing SF254/255's and the SF330.
The forms are completed and/or updated through GFS and then transmitted as XML and PDF documents electronically to the agencies' server with just a single click.
When received, information from the transmitted forms and other associated items are automatically parsed into a secure SQL table. For integration and compatibility with other systems, the required XML and PDF files may be generated by other sources and posted manually.
The system utilizes three separate levels of security in order to guarantee authenticity and eliminate any attempts at fraudulent transactions.
This process is a straight-forward approach that can bring a large number of pre-qualified firms down to a manageable sized list.
Using an integrated evaluation process, administrative personnel can generate their own criteria items for selection committee members who, in turn, use a custom designed Excel spreadsheet to critique the submittals individually and then upload their results back to the system to automatically tally scores and generate short-lists.
A key point here from the firm's point of view is that the forms can actually retain their original format because it plays into how firms tend to market themselves in this industry.
Appearance, neatness and concise information on these forms are crucial part of the process and this system allows firms to retain these qualities during the submittal process.