Small Business Director's Message
Welcome to the Army Contracting Command's Office of Small Business Program's website. Whether you’re a first-time or a returning visitor, you will find this website full of exciting resources and productive information available to you, just a click away.
Small Businesses are critical to our economic recovery and strength, to building America's future and to contributing towards the United States competing in today's global marketplace.
My philosophy is "Small Business Can Do It" and, by our combined efforts, we can provide the Warfighter the goods and services they need. We have made remarkable progress over the past year in developing collaborative relationships with a variety of small business special interest groups. We are also actively engaged by collaborating in a broad range of small business programs and activities, all focused on creating crucially needed opportunities for our small businesses.
As a new organization, educating you on business opportunities is a top priority for us. My team of professional Small Business Advocate's stands ready to aspire you in gaining a perspective on ACC's mission and contracting processes in order to guide you towards a future business opportunity.
I encourage each of you to take the time to view our new website and I am confident that you will discover the contents informative and useful.
Office of Small Business Programs
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Women Owned Business
The Office of Small Business Programs is committed to providing the most effective and innovative methods of assistance to meet the needs of Women-Owned Small Businesses (WOSBs) that are interested in doing business with the Army.
The federal government has established a government wide 5% contracting goal for women-owned small businesses. The US Army works with federal agencies to increase contracting opportunities and increase the number of women-owned businesses that successfully compete in the federal marketplace.
A women-owned small business is defined by Federal Acquisition Regulations Part 2.101 as a small firm:
Service Disabled Veteran Owned Business
"The United States must provide additional assistance and support to veterans to better equip them to form and expand small business enterprises, thereby enabling them to realize the American dream that they fought to protect."
-- One Hundredth Congress of the United States enacting the Veterans Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development Act of 1999: Public Law 106-50
SDVOSB are small business concerns with not less than 51 percent of which is owned by one or more service-disabled veterans or, in the case of any publicly owned business, not less than 51 percent of the stock of which is owned by one or more service-disabled veterans; and the management and daily business operations of which are controlled by one or more service-disabled veterans or, in the case of a veteran with permanent and severe disability, the spouse or permanent care giver of such veteran.
The Army Contracting Command is committed to targeting SDVOSB concerns for contract awards where it makes sense to do so, and within the restraints of the Federal Acquisition Regulation.
The Government Contracting Officer will often set aside, either partially or fully, procurements specifically for SDVOSB’s when the situation warrants it and no exceptions are applicable. For a procurement to be totally set-aside, a contracting officer must have reasonable expectations that offers will be obtained from at least two responsible SDVOSB and awards will be made at fair market price.
When an opportunity is open to large business, the large business proposal must be accompanied by a small business plan that defines specific goals for SDVOSB utilization. The offeror is evaluated on their past adherence to attaining goals on other Government contracts as a consideration for award. The plan is negotiated as part of the award document and progress toward attaining those goals is measured throughout the life of the awarded contract. How can you help yourself?
Department of Veterans Affairs
Small Disadvantaged Business and 8(a)
The 8(a) Program, named for Section 8(a) of the Small Business Act, is a business development program created to help small disadvantaged businesses compete in the market place. The 8(a) program is administered by the Small Business Administration.
The SBA 8(a) Program provides SDBs with a wide variety of business development support and other management and technical assistance, including contracting with the Army in sole source and competitive set- asides. http://www.sba.gov/aboutsba/sbaprograms/8abd/faqs/index.html )
SBA changed the certification procedures for SDBs, where offerors can self-certify as long as the agency continues to meet its SDB goals.
The 8(a) Streamlined Technology Acquisition Resources for Services (STARS) GWAC is a small business set-aside contract for technology solutions. It is designed to promote small business utilization when purchasing technology solutions for the federal government.
Historically Black College and Minority Institutions
The Office of Small Business Programs is committed to improving the higher education competitive participation of Historically Black Colleges and Universities and Minority Institutions (HBCU/MI); Minority Institutions include Hispanic Serving Institutions; Tribal Colleges and Universities; Alaskan and Hawaiian Native Serving Institutions; and Other Minority Serving Institutions that are qualified to compete for Army contracts, grants and/or formal agreements.
This culturally diverse program seeks to inform and inspire the Army acquisition or requirements community to always consider the capabilities of these institutions in all higher education acquisitions. The program also assists HBCU/MI to develop their faculties and students' business, engineering and science talents.
The federal executive and congressional interest in the HBCU/MI Program emanates from the White House and Congress, and this interest includes the oversight of planning, execution and measurement of program effectiveness.
The small business specialists and HBCU/MI liaisons seek to identify opportunities for HBCU/MI in research and development activities (to include small business technology transfer and subcontracting in the Mentor-Protégé development program, education and industrial training, market research, information systems planning and management, family services, etc.). They also present outreach programs that provide strategies and methods to increase HBCU/MI participation in Army procurements.
While schools self-certify on solicitations concerning their HBCU/MI status, the authority for authenticating their classification rests with the Secretary of Education.
A Historically Underutilized Business Zone (HUBZone) is an economically distressed area as determined by the Small Business Administration (SBA), based on income and unemployment data. Nationally, HUBZone areas include:
To be eligible for the HUBZone program, a small business must be:
The Mentor-Protégé Program assists eligible Small Disadvantaged Businesses (SDBs) (protégés) to successfully compete for prime contract and subcontract awards by partnering with major defense contractors (mentors) under individual, project-based agreements to help meet the Army mission.
Mentors must be:
Small Business Innovative Research
The ACC Office of Small Business Programs utilizes the Department of Defense (DOD) Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs to harness the talents of our nation's small technology companies. These two similar funding programs stimulate technological innovation and accelerate development and production of promising technologies that can help the Army accomplish its mission to fight and win on the ground, in air, space and cyberspace.
SBIR and STTR provide over a billion dollars in seed capital each year for early-stage research and development (R&D) at small technology companies. They fund projects that serve a DOD need and also have commercial applications.
Doing Business with ACC
Doing Business with ACC
The Army Contracting Command (ACC) made available billions of dollars in requirements for award to small businesses this year. How can your business compete for these opportunities? The most informed businesses usually are the most successful. We at the ACC Office of Small Business want to give you the most comprehensive information available to make your business successful. Read through these tutorials and follow the links provided for additional information.
I'm Just Getting Started
One of the best resources for a start up business that is targeting selling to the US Government is the Small Business Administration. Their web site has extremely useful information such as a small business planner that will help you get started at any stage of the business lifecycle. They have all kinds of services including financial assistance and counseling and assistance to help your business succeed. They also have a wealth of information to support your business needs.
Here are some other Small Business resources:
I AM UP AND RUNNING – WHAT DO I DO NOW?
The US Army has prepared a "13 Steps" presentation to help understand sometimes complex process of selling to the Army. Most critical is that you register your business on the Central Contractor Registration (CCR) web site. This is a "self" certification. You will need to obtain a Dunn and Bradstreet number as part of the registration. Also you will need Tax Identification Number (TIN) and Taxpayer Name, statistical information about your business, and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Information. During the certification process you will be asked what goods and or services you sell. You will need to go to the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) and select the appropriate codes that you qualify under. To see if you qualify as a small business relative to each NAICS code go to the Table of Size Standards maintained by the Small Business Administration.
Once you register in CCR, go to the ORCA site to complete "Representations and Certifications".
HOW DO I MARKET TO THE US ARMY?
It is important to stay on top of the many opportunities that your business may be able to provide. The US Army uses the Army Single Face to Industry (ASFI) to advertise all of its opportunities. This is a "front end" to the main Government opportunity web portal called "FEDBIZOPPS" This is an excellent source of information for all opportunities throughout the US Government. Requests for quotes for the entire Department of Defense can be researched on the DOD Procurement Gateway. Direct marketing can occur by contacting a Small Business Advocate at a specific location.
There is prior acquisition data available to get specific information about what is being purchased by the Government. Two excellent sources are the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS) and USASpending.
Tools and Resources
New! Acquisition Forecast
MISSION AND INSTALLATION CONTRACTING COMMAND
SURFACE DEPLOYMENT AND DISTRIBUTION COMMAND
HQ, Army Contracting Command issues the Acquisition Forecast of expected contract opportunities to industry. The forecast contains anticipated procurements (in excess of the simplified acquisition threshold) with the intent of increasing industries’ knowledge of the Army Contracting Command’s procurements and to enhance competition.
The procurements described in this forecast are expected to be solicited in this fiscal year and beyond, based on the best information available at the time of publication. All projected procurements are subject to modification and is in no way binding on the Government, and more specific information relating to any individual item or class of items will not be furnished until the proposed action is synopsized through the Government Point of Entry (GPE) or the solicitation is issued. Final decisions regarding the extent of competition (i.e., small business set-asides, 8(a) set-asides, unrestricted etc.) will not be made until each procurement is initiated. We recommend you also review http://www.fedbizopps.gov for the actual notice of a pending contract opportunity.
This estimate is for planning purposes only; it does not represent a presolicitation synopsis or constitute invitations for bid or request for proposals, nor is it a commitment by the Government to purchase the described products/services.
Alice Williams, Associate Director
Christopher A. Evans, Deputy Associate Director
Darlene Brakefield, Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) Program Manager
Constance Jones, Historical Black Colleges and University/Minority Institute
Dawn Robinson, Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB)