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WHAT TO DO AND WHAT NOT TO DO: STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL SMALL BUSINESS CONTRACTING WHAT TO DO AND WHAT NOT TO DO: STEPS TO SUCCESSFUL SMALL BUSINESS CONTRACTING

Take Advantage of Area PTACs • PTACs are a free resource available to you Take Advantage of Area PTACs • PTACs are a free resource available to you • The program was initiated in 1985 by DLA to increase competition • PTACs teach companies how to sell to the federal government • PTACs partner with the SBA to discover inadequacies in capability statements and input of System for Award Management (SAM) profile information 2

Small Business Preference (setaside) programs • Ensure you know if you qualify for one Small Business Preference (setaside) programs • Ensure you know if you qualify for one of the set-aside preference programs? • Determine if you qualify as: • • Small Business 8(a) Women-Owned Economically Disadvantaged Women-Owned HUBZone Veteran-Owned Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned 3

Be Cognizant of Communication Mediums • Registrations • CCR (codes) • SBA Profile (keywords, Be Cognizant of Communication Mediums • Registrations • CCR (codes) • SBA Profile (keywords, capabilities narrative, representation status) • ORCA (meeting standards & guidelines) • SAM • Capabilities Statements for Matchmaking Events, Tradeshows and Industry Days • Your business cards • Your website 4

Understand Responsibility to Properly Represent Yourself • Small business offices and contracting officers meet Understand Responsibility to Properly Represent Yourself • Small business offices and contracting officers meet with hundreds of businesses…Find your competitive niche and be able to explain this niche to the contracting officers or small business representatives when you meet with them. Leave a lasting impression of uniqueness. • Do not select NAICS codes for requirements that you might do-you will be spending more time sorting through opportunities than bidding on those that are best suited to your capabilities. • Respond to all Sources Sought Synopses—this is a chance to highlight your company’s capabilities. Sources Sought Synopses are a major decision criteria for acquisition approach 5

Understand FAR and CFR Rules • Understand size regulations and how you represent your Understand FAR and CFR Rules • Understand size regulations and how you represent your size status (CFR 121) • Understand your rights under appeal processes • Be aware of the current trends and past history of individual contract needs (acquisition strategy is fairly consistent for follow-on contracts) • Do not be afraid to reach out to the Small Business Offices for assistance in knowing what requirements are forecasted for small business set-asides 6

Know What To Expect • Take advantage of any procurement forecast mediums available. • Know What To Expect • Take advantage of any procurement forecast mediums available. • Links to Agency Recurring Procurement Forecasts are located at http: //acquisition. gov/comp/procurement_f orecasts/index. html. Additional program information may be located on each agency’s website. 7

Understanding your own company before you initiate contact • Know your core competencies! • Understanding your own company before you initiate contact • Know your core competencies! • Know what sets you apart! • Use the appropriate NAICS, PSC (Services), and FSC (Product) Codes • Know your company’s past performance track record • Be sure that your marketing information and SAM profile contains information on any MAS/FSS contracts and subcontracting performance by your firm that can provide you valuable past performance qualifications. 8

Learn what your customer needs • What products and services? (Research current opportunities on Learn what your customer needs • What products and services? (Research current opportunities on sites such as www. fbo. gov and past awards on www. fpds. gov) • Can you provide your customer with a more efficient means of doing something they require on a regular basis? • Do you have a more cost-effective product/process? • Can you provide a “green” or “bio-preferred” solution? • Will your product be more cost-effective over time because it is more durable? • Can you provide a “total solution”? – Not just offer a product, but properly dispose of the old one, for example? 9

Understand the Nuances of the Various NAICS Codes • It is essential to know Understand the Nuances of the Various NAICS Codes • It is essential to know the Federal Supply Classification Codes (FSC) and North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Codes for your product or service. • Log onto the SBA website at http: //www. sba. gov/content/table-smallbusiness-size-standards. • Understand your competitive position in relation to others similar to your size standard 10

Be Careful How You Market to the Federal Government • Broad-based or “blast” e-mail Be Careful How You Market to the Federal Government • Broad-based or “blast” e-mail type marketing is generally ineffective. • Determine which agencies and buying offices are purchasing what you sell and target those offices for your marketing efforts. • Initially work through the Office of Small Business. Do not contact contracting officers directly without first going to Small Business 11

Learn Relationship of NAICS Codes and Non-Manufacturing Rule • Contracting Officers may not assign Learn Relationship of NAICS Codes and Non-Manufacturing Rule • Contracting Officers may not assign wholesale or retail NAICS codes to procurements. • The law is very specific: “Procurements for supplies must be classified under the appropriate manufacturing NAICS code, not under the wholesale trade NAICS code. ” • Otherwise, the non-manufacturer rule allowing wholesalers (i. e. non-manufacturers) to bid would not be needed. 13 CFR § 121. 402(b) 12

Do Not Disregard the Importance of Subcontracting • Subcontracting can be an excellent entry Do Not Disregard the Importance of Subcontracting • Subcontracting can be an excellent entry point into federal acquisition. Regardless of your product or service, it is important that you do not neglect this very large secondary market. Take the time to review the SBA's Subcontracting Opportunities Directory • Available on www. sba. gov 13

Understand Subcontracting Facts • Contractors are required to report their plan results on the Understand Subcontracting Facts • Contractors are required to report their plan results on the government’s Electronic Subcontracting Reporting System (e. SRS), on a bi-annual basis for Individual Subcontracting Plans and an annual basis for Commercial Subcontracting Plans 14

Understand Subcontracting Facts (Cont) • If you are a large business who is subcontracting Understand Subcontracting Facts (Cont) • If you are a large business who is subcontracting with small business, please make sure your files are organized. Track the total amount of subcontracting dollars being spent by the company • Make sure you are receiving up-to-date representations, signed by the subcontractor, of the subcontractor’s size and socioeconomic status, obtained at least on an annual basis or when the subcontractor’s size status has changed. 15

Understand Applicability of Certificates of Competency • “The COC Program is applicable to all Understand Applicability of Certificates of Competency • “The COC Program is applicable to all Government acquisitions. ” Even unrestricted procurements! • A contracting officer shall, upon determining an apparent successful small business offeror to be non-responsible, refer that small business to the SBA for a possible COC…. ” FAR § 19. 601(c) (see also 13 C. F. R. § 125. 5(a)(1) and (2)). • Only one small business can be in line for award at a time. • The results of a COC are specific to the solicitation for which the referral was made. They are never “transferable. ” 16

Subcontracting References • Reviews of subcontracting plan holders 13 CFR 125. 3 • SBA Subcontracting References • Reviews of subcontracting plan holders 13 CFR 125. 3 • SBA Commercial Market Representatives: • http: //www. sba. gov/content/commercial-market-representatives • SBA SUB-Net: http: //www. sba. gov/content/sub-net • SBA Subcontracting Opportunities Directory: http: //www. sba. gov/subcontracting-directory • “SBLO Handbook”: http: //www. sba. gov/content/small-business-liaisonofficer-handbook • SBA-DCMA MOU: http: //guidebook. dcma. mil/37/Memorandumof. Understanding. pdf 17

Understand JV Size Exemptions for “Large” Procurements If: • • The procurement is bundled; Understand JV Size Exemptions for “Large” Procurements If: • • The procurement is bundled; or It is a “large” procurement • For a procurement having a receipts based size standard, the dollar value of the procurement exceeds ½ the size standard; or • For a procurements having an employee based size standard, the dollar value of the procurement exceeds $10 million. Then, the joint venture is small if each joint venture partner is small. 18

Know 8(a) Mentor Protégé Agreements Are A Valuable Asset • Must have a joint Know 8(a) Mentor Protégé Agreements Are A Valuable Asset • Must have a joint venture with all the elements of 13 CFR 124. 513(c) • Must meet the performance of work requirements in 13 CFR 124. 513(d) • If an 8 a procurement, JV agreement must be approved by SBA 19

Summary of CFR • SBA size regulations 13 CFR Part 121 • HUBZone regulations Summary of CFR • SBA size regulations 13 CFR Part 121 • HUBZone regulations 13 CFR 126 • SBA Certificate of Competency 13 CFR 125. 5 • Service-disabled veteran 13 CFR 125. 8 • 8(a) and SDB regulations 13 CFR 124 • Small disadvantaged business 13 CFR 124. 1001 • WOSB Program 13 CFR 127 • SBA Prime Contracting 13 CFR 125 • SBA Subcontracting 13 CFR 125. 3 20

Understand Protest Procedures (References) • HUBZone status protests FAR 19. 306 13 CFR 126. Understand Protest Procedures (References) • HUBZone status protests FAR 19. 306 13 CFR 126. 801 • NAICS code appeal FAR 19. 303 13 CFR 121. 1103 • Non-manufacturer rule waivers FAR 19. 102(f)(1)-(7) 13 CFR 121. 1204 • SDVOSB status protest FAR 19. 307 13 CFR 125. 23 • WOSB Program status protest FAR 19. 308/13 CFR 1275. 600 21

Final Thoughts • Government contracts will not automatically arrive at your door step! It Final Thoughts • Government contracts will not automatically arrive at your door step! It takes a lot of tenacity, commitment on your company’s part to accept non selection, and a willingness to learn government contracting processes to eventually succeed. • The government is looking for the most qualified candidates to fulfill their contract needs. If you have a unique “niche”, ensure you are marketing the right capability for the right requirement. • Do not rely on your socioeconomic small business status as a crutch. Contract awards are based upon qualifications within your socioeconomic categories 22

Tools For Discovering SBA • Your closest SBA Government Contracting contact: http: //www. sba. Tools For Discovering SBA • Your closest SBA Government Contracting contact: http: //www. sba. gov/content/governmentcontracting-field-staff-directory • About SBA Government Contracting: http: //www. sba. gov/about-officescontent/1/2986 23

Resource Tom W. Krusemark Procurement Center Representative Area IV, Government Contracting 937 -255 -3333 Resource Tom W. Krusemark Procurement Center Representative Area IV, Government Contracting 937 -255 -3333 Thomas. [email protected] GOV www. sba. gov October 19, 2015 www. sba. gov 24