From the desk of Brian W. Cassidy, President- Creative Sales Solutions, Inc.
Creative Sales Solutions, Inc. has been a schedule 75 contract holder since March, 2001. We have served the federal government with excellent service, products, and compliant pricing for a decade.
However, during this time we have also experienced growing bi-partisanship and apathy when dealing with GSA , especially when the people in charge have no clue as to what it takes in time, human resources, and capital to maintain compliance. I chalk this up to the fact that either they don't understand free market enterprise, or they don't care. In my opinion, it's probably BOTH.
Below is our GSA 1st quarter sales for the last 4 years. Please note 2010 & 2011:
2010: $171,174.29 (-25%)
2011: $ 93,884.33 (-45%)
In Nov.2009, I was given a new CO, who promptly informed me AFTER I had a " contactor assistance visit" the previous April, that he had no documentation that I was a full catalog dealer, and that I wasn't allowed to have my full-line catalog on GSA Advantage. I explained that I WAS a full-line catalog dealer, that it had been approved in 2001.
Again, he stated he had no documentation of it. I countered that anything loaded in the SIP program HAD to be approved by the CO, that contractors cannot simply and randomly load any products they want on their GSA site and that surely he was aware of this. We went through this song and dance (compiling a lot of expense and time) until July 8th, 2010, when he finally approved my full catalog conversion. During this time, we were not allowed to update pricing or products on our site, thus the 25% drop.
Now, after enduring all of that, we face extinction due to the reckless and uninformed in Washington. I have lost 45% of my business as a whole, and just in the last month, laid off the best damn employee (10 years) any business owner could ask for.
Telling a Mid 30's mother of two small girls that you cannot afford to keep her, and that she needs to get on unemployment( welfare) is the hardest thing I've ever had to do.
If the FSSI is allowed to continue, I cannot foresee us staying in business past May. What do I do about my responsibilities to my family? Especially my Father-in -law, who has Alzheimer's and I provide the funding for his assisted living? What about my partner, who is responsible for two children, one in college and one in grade school?
Very Truly Yours,
Brian W. Cassidy, President- Creative Sales Solutions, Inc.