So you think you're ready to sell to the government, but is the government ready to buy from you?
Despite the fact that formal goals are in place to ensure that small businesses get their fair share of work with the federal government, winning a share of the percentage of contracts set aside for small business isn’t easy.
Convincing government buyers that you’re a viable business partner who can help them achieve their goals requires a different approach that one you’re used to seeing in the commercial sector.
Collaboration and teaming is very important in government contracting. Often times, set-aside contracts are too big for a single business to handle. Teaming with other small businesses is a great way to provide the collective services that agencies often seek within one contract.
Teaming provides a valuable benefit as it gives small businesses the opportunity to build credibility for themselves and show proficiency not only to the government but to other contractors.
Teaming requires preparation and careful management. Learn best practices, raise your profile and build potential teaming connections.
Get a mentor
Our mentors are invaluable to small business owners, and in the government contracting world they can make the different between success and failure. If you don’t know the movers and shakers, you will need to find someone who can help you navigate the marketplace and its contracting space.
Demonstrate strong performance
When it comes to spending U.S. taxpayer dollars, government agencies want to ensure that they take the minimum amount of risk when awarding contracts. This means that they look for companies or a team of companies with experience and a good track record, including on-time service delivery, reliable goods and on-budget execution. It is much easier to demonstrate as a team that you are qualified and can provide evidence to proof-of-performance capabilities when biding. Learn from those with government connections and experience. Is your industry reputation strong?
Promote government-centric value
In the public sector, a clear understanding of the buyer’s challenges, issues and ecosystem is a must. What works in the private sector doesn’t always cut it with government buyers. Your messaging and proposition needs to position your value in the context of your ability to deliver against clear goals. This is where proof of performance is vital as a reliable, proven low-risk solution provider.
Get additional resources
All small businesses need additional resources to improve their positioning and increase their chances of consideration for an award. WashCon and its members provide a success oriented forum to help your small businesses compete for government contracts.