By Mark Odell
This is a very broad question that I am asked often by clients in the early stages of their Government Contracting journey. Many clients may have heard from a friend, relative, or the internet that selling their goods and/or services to the government can be a very lucrative endeavor. While this can certainly be true, the reality is that you would be best served to slowly integrate government sales into your existing and established business as you learn the nuances and the lingo of the GovCon space.
ARE YOU READY FOR GOVERNMENT CONTRACTING?
To help determine if you and your business are ready to begin the GovCon journey, answer the baseline questions below (honestly) and be prepared to discuss these in detail with your APEX Accelerator Consultant. This will help both you and your counselor assess your contracting readiness.
- Do you have a written business plan?
- Do you have an accounting program?
- Has your business been registered for at least 12 months?
- Is your business legally registered in the state of Florida? If registered in another state, but doing business in Florida—are you registered as a “Foreign Business” entity in FL?
- Is your company in good standing with the State of Florida? Current FL filing in Sunbiz for 2023/2024?
- Have you generated a profit from your business? If yes, was it done through commercial (public or retail sale), private (person or individual) or government (federal agency, local or state agency/department)?
I’ve got all those questions covered…. Now what?
Congratulations! Now we can start with registering your company with every procurement department that you wish to target your sales, and learn about their procedures, threshold levels, and terms and conditions. These can be local, county, state, or federal agencies or institutions, but focus on areas that you can serve with confidence so that you can under-promise and over-deliver in order to build some performance history. We’ll also look to discover, and apply for, any additional set-aside certifications for which your company may qualify, (i.e. veteran-owned, woman-owned, minority-owned, HUBZone, etc.), in order to further enhance your success rate with government sales.
From there we’ll work on your marketing collateral including your company’s Capabilities Statement, Federal and State profiles, and networking events. In addition, we’ll continue to help grow your knowledge and build relationships which are key elements of any solid business.
This will all culminate in being ready to pursue and WIN sales in the government marketplace.