Connecting to Government Procurement Opportunities
Business Enterprise Certification is a tool for disadvantaged, minority- and women-owned businesses to identify and certify their firms as such for the purpose of seeking contracting opportunities with state and federal agencies that set and track participation goals.
But, as some newly certified firms soon find out, certification is not a guarantee of new business. In fact, after achieving business enterprise certification, business management, lead development and marketing activities should proceed as with any business competing in a crowded marketplace.
However, as a certified firm, there are marketing and business development resources that other firms cannot access. Often these resources are not easy to find, and with time being the most limited resource of most business owners, researching these resources becomes a low priority.
Following is a list of online registration and procurement sites facilitated by government agencies that provide exposure for certified firms to government contracting and procurement entities, as well as first tier contractors seeking certified firms to bid on projects.
In order to save time when preparing to register on Government-facilitated websites, it will be helpful for you to have on hand the following information:
Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) - Internal Revenue Service -
Number assigned to a business by the IRS
North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) United States Census -
Set of categories developed by the United States, Canada and Mexico to classify businesses in the three countries. This classification replaces the old SIC code.
D-U-N-S (Data Universal Numbering System) Number - Dun & Bradstreet at 866-705-5711 or Download form -
Nine-digit number issued by Dun & Bradstreet that the federal government uses to identify a contractor and list its address, telephone number, employee size and other information.
Review the following list of links to agencies to ensure your firm is connected:
Prime contractors and government, commercial and educational entities post solicitations or bid notices on the Small Business Administration's site SUB-Net. You use this can market your goods/services to prime contractors and research information on subcontracting opportunities. http://web.sba.gov/subnet/search/
- ORCA - E-Government - Many certified firms have multiple certifications, including reciprocal DBE certification from states outside of Kentucky. E-Government, a federal initiative has developed an online resource that replaces the paper-based system formerly used to track certified businesses. Visit http://orca.bpn.gov to record all of your company's required representations and certifications so they can be accessed by federal purchasing agencies.
- Central Contractor Registration (CCR) - http://www.acq.osd.mil/sadbu/
The primary registrant database for the U.S. Government’s primary vendor database for the federal government. This database is for all individuals or companies, not just certified firms, seeking government contracts. The CCR collects, validates and disseminates data in support of acquisition activities.
- Department of Defense Office of Small Business Programs
With the proximity of Ft. Knox and the BRAC initiatives, registration with the Department of Defense (DoD) can be beneficial to DBEs. This organization is committed to maximizing DoD purchases through small businesses. The site includes the basics of doing business with and marketing to the DoD, as well as details about various small business programs.
- Procurement Technical Assistance Centers -
Free assistance for vendors planning to do business in the federal civilian and/or DoD marketplace.
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