Exploring the vast opportunities offered by the U.S. government as the largest buyer of goods and services can significantly boost your business revenue. However, before diving into online contract searches and bids, it’s crucial to establish a solid foundation for your business in the government contracting realm. Here are four key items you need to address:
- Industry Identification Number and Codes: Obtain the relevant codes that identify your business within the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). These codes enable federal agencies to classify and compare businesses. Additionally, familiarize yourself with Federal Supply Codes (FSC) and Product Service Codes (PSC) that may pertain to your offerings.
- Register with the System for Award Management (SAM): Visit the System for Award Management website to register your entity and acquire a Unique Entity ID (UEID). The UEID, a 12-character identifier, has replaced the older D-U-N-S number, eliminating the need for a third-party company (Dun & Bradstreet) in the registration process.
- Explore Contracting Assistance Programs: Determine if your business is eligible for specific government programs designed to assist small businesses in securing federal contracts. Examples include the Small Disadvantaged Business program, Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contracting program, Veteran Assistance programs, 8(a) Business Development Program, SBA Mentor-Protégé program, Joint Ventures, 7(j) Management and Technical Assistance Program, HUBZone program, and Natural Resource Sales Assistance program. These programs provide valuable support and resources tailored to various business needs.
- Prepare Your Company: Take necessary steps to prepare your company for government contracting success:
- Familiarize yourself with the rules outlined in the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR), ensuring compliance with the extensive regulations governing government contracts.
- Identify your product or service niche and concentrate your efforts on excelling in that particular area.
- Decide whether you will enter as a Prime Contractor or Subcontractor, considering the scope and complexity of projects.
- Ensure your IT infrastructure aligns with strict security protocols imposed by the government.
- Prepare your tools, systems, software, and personnel for thorough scrutiny, surprise checks, and audits.
Accounting for government contracts often differs significantly from standard accounting practices, even for experienced accountants. Understanding these distinctions is crucial. If you require guidance and expertise in government contract accounting, rely on the 20-plus years of experience offered by Peter Witts CPA. Contact us to benefit from our specialized knowledge and ensure your accounting practices align with government contracting requirements.
By establishing a solid foundation and understanding the unique landscape of government contracting, you are positioning your business for success. Embrace the opportunities, leverage available resources, and navigate the intricate world of government contracts with confidence.