Breaking into the world of federal contracting may seem daunting, but with the right approach and guidance, it is an attainable goal. As specialized accountants working with government contractors, we understand the dedication and effort required to secure that first contract. If you’re eager to enter the realm of federal contracting, consider these tips to increase your chances of winning that initial award.
Ensure Full Compliance
Before pursuing government contracts, it’s crucial to ensure that your business is fully compliant with government regulations. Familiarize yourself with the specific requirements imposed on contractors and strive to stay in compliance from the very beginning. Failing to meet these obligations can jeopardize your chances of securing and retaining contracts.
Registration on SAM
To bid on government contracts, you must be registered on the System for Award Management (SAM), the government’s contractor database. SAM is the primary source from which the federal government selects its contractors. Registering as a small business, gathering relevant company information, and inputting your details into SAM is a vital step in accessing contracting opportunities. However, it is advisable to familiarize yourself with regulatory requirements before registering to ensure seamless compliance and successful audits.
Consider Subcontracting Opportunities
Breaking into government contracting doesn’t necessarily require becoming a prime contractor right away. Subcontracting offers a valuable entry point into the field. Many contracts call for subcontractors to support prime contractors in delivering specific goods or services. By collaborating as a subcontractor, you can establish connections, gain experience, and learn from prime contractors, setting the stage for future prime contracts. Subcontracting can provide a less complex introduction to federal contracting while offering valuable insights and networking opportunities.
Understanding Different Contract Types
When searching for contracts on SAM, it’s essential to comprehend the various contract types available. Two primary types to consider are single award contracts and multiple award contracts. Single award contracts are granted to a sole vendor, while multiple award contracts are shared among several vendors. Under multiple award contracts, task orders are competed among the awardees. Understanding these contract types will inform your bidding strategy and help you navigate the opportunities available. Keep in mind that multiple award contracts can be a stepping stone for establishing credibility and reputation as a dependable vendor for the government.
Focus on Small Business Contracts
The federal government sets aside a significant number of contracts specifically for small businesses. As a small business owner, leverage this advantage by actively seeking out contracts reserved for businesses like yours. Additionally, determine if your business qualifies as woman-owned, minority-owned, or veteran-owned, as the government reserves a certain percentage of contracts for these categories. Identifying and pursuing these opportunities can increase your chances of securing that pivotal first contract.
Partner with Government Contracting Experts
Whether you’re seeking your first contract or require assistance in maintaining federal compliance as your business grows, Peter Witts CPA is here to help. Our expertise lies in working with government contractors, and we possess a deep understanding of the regulatory requirements in this field. Contact us today to learn more about our accounting services compliant with the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) and the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). Together, we’ll navigate the complexities of government contracting and position your business for success.