If you are interested in the world of government contracting, there is a lot to know. The process for pursuing these opportunities requires many steps and can be challenging too. But if done right, it will be worth your time investment and can potentially provide lucrative results.
It is tough getting into the federal government contracting market. It is perhaps even harder for a one-person company. But it is possible with some clever strategy.
The Challenge of Market Penetration
Entering the highly competitive federal government market with the highly complex requirements of its procurements can be daunting. Usually, vendors penetrate the market either as prime contractors or as subcontractors.
To be successful in winning a prime contract, you need to write a compelling proposal that fully commits your company and ensures compliance with all terms of the deal. This means they are 100% responsible if anything goes wrong. Make sure everything is on point.
The federal government contracting industry is a tough, highly competitive business. But if you have the know-how to win prime contracts, then focusing on those first might be your best opportunity for market penetration. On the other hand, without current or past relevant experience, your company’s proposal will not be scored well, resulting in a low probability of winning (Pwin).
Another good way to find opportunities is to become a part of the GSA schedules program. The General Services Administration (GSA) is an independent agency of the US Government that helps manage and support federal agencies. GSA ensures industry partners make sure they are compliant with basic federal regulations and policies. They offer fair-priced goods and services. They use streamlined purchasing practices, saving time and money for all parties.
Become A Subcontractor
One of the best ways to penetrate the federal government contract market is to become a subcontractor. There are two ways this can happen. Before a proposal is submitted by a primary bidder, you can be selected to join the bid team as a subcontractor. Or you can be selected to join the winning vendor.
Join Proposal Teams
A good tactic is to offer your smaller company to work the primary bidder. This is often an excellent way to enter this contracting market. This means an easier workload responsibility and is an opportunity to gain relevant experience.
Join Contract Teams
When a contract is awarded, hard-working entrepreneurs should find their way to subcontracting. Some of these prime contractors invest incredible resources in business development and helping write proposals. However, following the award, they often under-resource the project. In other words, the primary bidder will put tremendous effort into a winning proposal but fail to obtain the needed employees to complete the project.
One of the most overlooked contracts that can be easily won by a subcontractor is an understaffed contract. These come with low overhead costs and great benefits. You should identify staffing challenges in these types of programs, then approach the prime contractor’s program manager ready to work.
Entering the world of government contracting is not an easy process. It requires many things to know and certain basic steps. Contract compliance is indispensable for success. But a good tactic for new government contractors to enter the federal government market is to join forces with a winning bidder.