After pursuing a federal contract for 10 years, small business owner Rosemary Swiark knows that bidding time, energy, and money (sometimes five digits) aren’t worth it.
“There is a particular project we know, it’s not worth it,” says Swierk. “There are many ways the federal government can unintentionally create a small business with a disability.”
Her company, Direct Steel and Construction, contacted the entire list of 660 Pentagon contractors about 10 years ago and then contracted with the federal government about 10 years ago as a subcontractor. have started.
“It’s a very difficult process for everyone to step into the door,” she said.
As the Biden administration proposesFollowing the coronavirus pandemic, SMEs are afraid to miss the opportunity to get a job, even though the government is focusing on getting more companies into the market.
In fiscal year 2019, the federal government spent approximately $ 600 billion on everything from building operations and maintenance to IT and food. As part of this, 23% of federal funding needs to be allocated to SMEs.
Dane Stangler of the Bipartisan Policy Center said: “It contributes to economic development and local economic development.”
Governments tend to reach SME goals each year, but much of that money is spent on fewer companies. The number of SMEs participating in federal contracts has been in the last decade. The bipartisan policy center found a 38% decline.
Small business owners overwhelmingly support the expansion of opportunities through federal, state, and municipal processes. However, a new study by Goldman Sachs shows that 88% of small business owners support changes in the federal procurement process, ensuring they receive more federal contracts.
“Are you interested in applying for a federal job when you ask only the population of companies that only do state or local jobs? The good news is that 75% say yes,” Joe Wall said. Oversees banking initiatives, educates and lobbying on behalf of small businesses. “That is, there is a real pipeline across different industries that are very interested in applying for federal jobs. If the procurement system is reformed, it will be simpler, more transparent and more transparent. The total population that could be brought into federal contract space if it becomes accessible. “
Of the SME owners who applied for state and local contracts but did not apply for federal contracts, 54% said the federal procurement process took too long and 42% lacked information about opportunities. Sufficient, 42% said the process was too complex, 41% argued. SMEs are unlikely to secure contracts because they are not properly prioritized, 31% Said the federal procurement process was too expensive.
“[No one] There is a reason for these processes because the government wants to allocate our public funds to nighttime operations, “said Strangler.” But we prioritize SMEs in the contract process. If so, to ensure that those processes are as streamlined and efficient as possible. “
Only 51% of respondents who have applied for a federal contract feel they have access to the information they need about an open federal contract. In other words, nearly half think they don’t know about potential jobs.
Ben Johnson, CEO of Freya Systems, said: His software and data analytics company has submitted six proposals in about two years. No results have been obtained, but Johnson hopes for more constructive feedback.
“We are confident that we can do great things for the government, but the existing framework and transparency are a bit difficult,” he said.
Although SMEs have the opportunity to become subcontractors for federal prime contracts, research has shown that SMEs may be removed from the project after the contract is signed. Fifty-eight percent of those who applied for a federal contract said this was a serious problem.
“The challenge facing SMEs, especially when it comes to infrastructure-related contracts, is that the government uses many large companies for the size of the contract. They trust that SMEs can do it. They expect large companies to subcontract to SMEs because they haven’t [ones]”Proposal Helper is working with a company to win a government contract,” said Reena Bhatia. “It’s a very dirty game.”
Regulations are in place, but there is no guarantee that SMEs will get the benefits they expect, according to Bhatia.
However, the Biden administration wants to extend the federal contract to small businesses. Earlier this month, the president announced plans to increase federal contracts with disadvantaged small businesses by 50% as part of an effort to close the gap between racially rich and poor.
“Imagine that instead of denying the ability of millions of entrepreneurs to access and contract capital, they brought their dreams to market, created jobs and invested in the community. Please give me.”..
Isabel Gusman, Secretary of the Small and Medium Business Administration, also said that under her leadership the contract program would be a priority.
Swierk hopes that there will be more and more equitable opportunities in the future with reasonable demands for small businesses to participate.
“I feel if there is a real intention to support small businesses,” she said. “It’s very difficult to understand how difficult it is for these policy makers to become federal contractors. It is important”.
SMEs are afraid to “miss opportunities” as the Biden administration pushes for large-scale spending
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