Have you developed a capability statement/line card?
Sample in Appendix) It is highly recommended that you develop a one-page synopsis of your company to forward to government officials, which will also aid in introducing yourself to prospective prime contractors. The capabilities statement/line card may include:
- A brief description of your company and what products and services are offered
- Past performance
- Point of contact information
- Website address and links
- All of the following, if applicable: General Services Administration (GSA)
Schedule Contract Number, NAICS code(s), DUNS number, and CAGE code.
The capabilities statement/line card is a critical component when entering into business with the government. It should include all relevant information, but in a summary format. Due to email account storage limits, please ensure capabilities statement/line card is not too large, lengthy, or with elaborate graphics to ensure it is received and not locked up by the government server. I also recommend that you put the NAICS codes associated with your company’s industry on the back of any business cards given to government officials.
Identify Current Procurement Opportunities
Identify current procurement opportunities in your product or service area by checking the BetaSAM Web site, the web site where solicitations and special announcements are made. www.beta.SAM.gov can assist you in identifying requirements and send you e-mailnotifications of requirements.
DUNS: Effective December 2020, GSA intends to have transitioned all government systems away from using D&B Data Universal Numbering System numbers (“DUNS”) and instead using new Unique Entity Identifiers (“UEI”). The UEI is a new, nonproprietary identifier that will be assigned through GSA’s System for Award Management (“SAM”) registration process. Specifically, GSA is transitioning from and will stop using the Dun & Bradstreet (“D&B”) proprietary system for verification and validation of entities registering to do business with the federal government.
CAGE code: This code is used to support a variety of mechanized systems throughout the government, and provides for a standardized method of identifying a given facility at a specific location. A CAGE code may be used for a facility clearance, a pre-award survey, automated bidders lists, pay processes, source of supply, etc. In some cases, prime contractors may require their sub-contractors to also have a CAGE code. To obtain a CAGE code visit http://www.dlis.dla.mil/cage_welcome.asp.
What is your company’s size standards per the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS)?
The NAICS code scheme is used by the federal government to identify and classify specific categories of business activity that represent the lines of business a firm conducts. These are mandatory codes that identify what type of activity (e.g. agriculture, construction, manufacturing, etc.) an entity performs, as well as the type of product or service offered. As a business you must match your products and services to a NAICS code. Businesses generally have a primary NAICS code, and may have multiple NAICS codes if they sell multiple products and services. The NAICS classification establishes the applicable size standard for the acquisition. Businesses also must match their products and services to a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code. Businesses generally have a primary NAICS code, and may have multiple NAICS codes if they sell multiple products and services. The federal government does not assign a wholesale code (Sector 42), or a retail code (sectors 44 and 45) to an acquisition. Why, because sectors 42 and 44–45 are not applicable to Federal contracts under SBA’s regulations and SBA has excluded them from the list of industries designated as substantially underrepresented. 13 CFR 121.201.
The AbilityOne program is a Socio-economic program whose purpose is to create jobs and training opportunities for people who are blind or who have other severe disabilities. MICC Fort Bliss has a requirement to provide Facility Support Operation Services that is listed on the AbilityOne Program Procurement List. The contractor’s business size is large, therefore subcontracting opportunities are available in the AbilityOne marketplace. The contract is jointly administered by the Committee for Purchase from People Who Are Blind or Severely Disabled and the MICC.
There are maximum practicable opportunities for the award of prime contracts and subcontracts to small business concerns, small business concerns owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans, qualified HUBZone small business concerns, small business concerns owned and controlled by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals, and small business concerns owned and controlled by women. Several contracting programs allow small businesses to compete only with similar firms for government contracts or receive sole-source awards in circumstances in which such awards could not be made to other firms.
These programs, which give small businesses a chance to win government contracts without having to compete against larger and more experienced companies, include the following;
- Small Business Program
- Small Disadvantaged Businesses and 8(a)
- Veteran-Owned and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Programs (SDVOSB)
- Women-Owned Small Business Program
- Historically Underutilized Business Zone Program
Section 8(a) Business Development (BD) Program was authorized under Section 8(a) of the Small Business Act The 8(a) Program is a business development program that helps disadvantaged business firms compete in the American economy by assisting in the expansion and development of existing, newly organized, or prospective profit-oriented small firms. The 8(a) Program is set up as a nine year program composed of two stages. The Developmental Stage is the first four years with emphasis on sole source contracts, strengthening financial and managerial skills, and improving access to markets. The Transitional Stage is the last five years with emphasis on competition, overcoming remaining elements of economic disadvantage, and preparing for graduating out of the program. Small Businesses may apply for the 8(a) program if they are owned, operated, and managed on a daily basis by individuals who are socially and economically disadvantaged. The 8(a) Program is administered by the Small Business Administration (SBA) who must certify and monitor all firms in the program. Under this program, the government awards prime contracts to the SBA, which in turn, subcontracts with one of its approved 8(a) contractors.
Authority. A contracting officer can give work to an 8(a) business if they determine that the 8(a) business is responsible, will do the work at a fair market price and the estimated cost is $4 million or less ($7 million for manufacturing). The 8(a) Business Development Program sole source award is the least restrictive of all the socioeconomic categories. There is no NAICS Code restriction and non limiting rule that only one concern can reasonably be expected to satisfy the requirement.
Acquisitions offered to the SBA under the 8(a) program shall be awarded based on competition among eligible 8(a) firms if there is a reasonable expectation that two or more eligible and responsible 8(a) firms will submit quotes or offers so that award can be made at fair market price and the anticipated value of the contract, including options, will exceed $7 million for acquisitions assigned NAICS manufacturing codes and $4 million for all other acquisitions, including services.
- Must be a small business, as determined by the Small Business Administration.
- Must be at least 51-percent owned by at least one veteran, as defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(2); or, if a publicly owned business, at least 51-percent of the stock must be owned by at least one veteran.
- Must have management and daily operations controlled by at least one veteran.
Veteran status may be self-certified in accordance with FAR 52-219-1.
There is no set-aside program for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses.
The Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) contracting program is designed to help federal agencies achieve their statutory goal of awarding at least 3% of their federal contracting dollars to SDVOSBs.
To be an Eligible Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) a company:
- Must be a small business, as determined by the SBA.
- Must be at least 51 percent owned by at least one service-disabled veteran, as defined in 38 U.S.C. 101(16); or, if a publicly owned business, at least 51-percent of the stock must be owned by at least one service-disabled veteran.
- Management and daily operations must be controlled by at least one service-disabled veteran or by the spouse or permanent caregiver of the service-disabled veteran if such veteran has a permanent and severe disability.
Veteran status may be self-certified in accordance with FAR 52-219-1.
This program assists service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses through set-asides and sole-source awards. Federal agencies may award sole source contracts to SDVOSBs. The contracting officer can consider a sole source when the contracting officer does not have a reasonable expectation that offers will be received from two or more eligible SDVOSB, the price of the contract does not exceed $4 million ($6.5 million for manufacturing contracts) and the award can be made at a fair and reasonable price.
The WOSB and EDWOSBs contracting program is designed to help federal agencies achieve their statutory goal of awarding at least 5% of their federal contracting dollars to WOSBs. The SBA oversees the Women-Owned Small Businesses (WOSB) Program. First the acquisition must be assigned a NAICS code in which either–
- WOSBs are underrepresented or
- EDWOSBs are substantially underrepresented
To be an Eligible WOSB, a company:
- Must be a small business that is at least 51% percent unconditionally and directly owned and controlled by one or more women who are United States citizens.
- Must have a woman manage the day-to-day operations, make long-term decisions for the business, hold the highest officer position in the business and work at the business full-time during normal working hours.
To be an Eligible EDWOSB, a company:
- Must be a WOSB that is at least 51% owned by one or more women who are “economically disadvantaged.”
- Must have an economically disadvantaged woman manage the day-to-day operations, make long-term decisions for the business, hold the highest officer position in the business and work at the business full-time during normal working hours.
WOSBs and EDWOSBs NAICS code in industries in which the SBA determines WOSBs are underrepresented or substantially underrepresented in federal procurement.
This program assists WOSBs and EDWOSBs small businesses through set-asides and sole-source awards. Federal agencies may award sole source contracts to WOSBs. The contracting officer can consider a sole source when the contracting officer does not have a reasonable expectation that offers will be received from two or more eligible WOSBs so long as the award can be made at a fair and reasonable price, and the anticipated total value of the contract, including any options, is below $4 million ($6.5 million for manufacturing contracts).
NOTE: Veteran Administration’s (VA) Programs Only Applies to VA’s Contracting.
The HUBZone contracting program is designed to help federal agencies achieve their statutory goal of awarding at least 3% of their federal contracting dollars to HUBZone small businesses. The SBA oversees the HUBZones Program. The determination of whether an area is a HUBZone is based upon criteria specified in 13 C.F.R. Section 126.103.
To be an Eligible HUBZone, a company:
The term “HUBZone small business concern” means—a small business concern that is at least 51 percent owned and controlled by United States citizens;
To be certified as a HUBZone small business, at least 35% of the small business’s employees must generally reside in a HUBZone. The HUBZone program targets assistance to small businesses located in areas with low income, high poverty, or high unemployment.
Qualified HUBZone small business concern
The term “qualified HUBZone small business concern” means a HUBZone small business concern that has been certified by the Administrator in accordance with the procedures described in this section.
The program assists small businesses located in HUBZone-designated areas through set asides, sole source awards and price evaluation preferences (of up to 10%) in full and open competitions.
Authority. A contracting officer may award sole source contracts under this section to any qualified HUBZone small business concern, if—(i) the qualified HUBZone small business concern is determined to be a responsible contractor with respect to performance of such contract opportunity, and the contracting officer does not have a reasonable expectation that 2 or more qualified HUBZone small business concerns will submit offers for the contracting opportunity; (ii) the anticipated award price of the contract (including options) will not exceed—(I) $7 million for manufacturing contracts; or (II) $4 million for all other contract opportunities; and (iii) in the estimation of the contracting officer, the contract award can be made at a fair and reasonable price.
Price evaluation preference in full and open competitions
In general, when a contract is to be awarded on the basis of full and open competition, the price offered by a qualified HUBZone small business concern shall be deemed as being lower than the price offered by another offeror (other than another small business concern), if the price offered by the qualified HUBZone small business concern is not more than 10 percent higher than the price offered by the otherwise lowest, responsive, and responsible offeror.
There are numerous opportunities for a company seeking business.
General Services Administration (GSA)
Through the GSA Multiple Award Schedules (MAS) program, GSA establishes long-term government-wide contracts with commercial firms to provide access to millions of commercial products and services at volume discount pricing.
Regardless of your product or service, it is important that you not neglect the very large secondary market. Many of DoD’s requirements may be beyond the scope of a single small business. It is encouraged that prime contractors subcontract and team with small business concerns.
The SBA also offers a website to search for or post subcontracting opportunities that can be found at
Participation as a subcontractor can be profitable if a prime contract job is not desired, or if a business wants to gather experience and network with other companies. At many Army installations, when solicitations with subcontracting opportunities have been issued, prospective subcontractors and suppliers may download a copy of the list of plan holders or request this information from the MICC Small Business Professional. The list will provide names and addresses of firms expected to bid as prime contractors. Multiple installations also have available the current contracts on their specific installation’s web site where companies may contact the contractors directly to inquire about subcontracting opportunities.
Certificate of Competency (COC) Program empowers the SBA to certify to Government contracting officers as to all elements of responsibility of any small business concern to receive and perform a specific Government contract which allows an apparent successful small business offeror found to be non-responsible by the contracting officer to obtain another opportunity at their responsibility issue. A contracting officer shall, upon determining an apparent successful small business offeror to be non-responsible, refer that small business to the Small Business Administration (SBA) for a possible COC. If the SBA determines the small business to be responsible, SBA will issue a COC stating that the holder is responsible (with respect to all elements of responsibility, including, but not limited to, capability, competency, capacity, credit, integrity, perseverance, tenacity, and limitations on subcontracting) for the purpose of receiving and performing a specific Government contract. (FAR 19.6)
Veterans Affairs (VA) For information on doing business with the VA, go to
Veterans Business Outreach Program Contact information for the eight centers is available at: https://www.sba.gov/business-guide/grow-your-business/veteran-owned-businesses
It is important that you become familiar with federal contracting procedures and regulations. Small Business Programs are listed in FAR Part 19, Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (DFARS) 219, and Army Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement (AFARS) 5119. All three can be found at: http://farsite.hill.af.mil/