Now we’re going to tell you how women-owned small businesses can do the same.
All federal agencies are required to set aside five percent of their government contracts for women-owned small businesses. Five percent might seem like a small amount, but the opportunities are bountiful (take a look at all these government agencies and how many contracts they awarded).
Since the year 2000, U.S. government agencies have awarded 2,722 contracts worth more than $146 million combined to women-owned small businesses in Congressional District 5, which includes Spokane County and much of Eastern Washington. In 2013 alone so far, women-owned small businesses in the fifth district have been awarded 419 contracts worth more than $12 million.
Those contracts in 2013 were given to companies that offer or provide administrative management, janitorial services, security guards, communication equipment, landscaping services, temporary help services, office supplies, catering, and much more.
As you can see, your business just might find a customer in the federal government.
For example, Azar’s Food Service is a woman-owned catering business that has been winning government contracts since 2011. The company currently holds the contract for catering services at the Jackson Federal Building in Seattle, as well as the Hart-Doyle-Inouye Federal Building in Battle Creek, Mich.
Another example is American Van Service. Throughout the past ten years, the West Plains company has been awarded 29 contracts totaling more than $2.8 million through the Department of Defense for packing and moving services at Fairchild Air Force Base.
Government contracts aren’t just for putting up buildings. Government agencies need catering, dry cleaning, maintenance, A/V help and much more. While not woman-owned, Huppin’s – the well-known and longtime Spokane electronics store – has a government contract to do work with Fairchild Air Force Base.
Our Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) is tasked with helping business from 12 counties in Eastern Washington through the government contracting process. It hosts quarterly seminars specifically for women-owned small businesses. The next one is this Friday, Sept. 27. If you can’t make it, or if you’re reading this after Sept. 27, there’s another seminar on Jan. 24.
If you search enough, you might find that there are a lot of customers within the government looking to do business with you.
For more information on GSI’s PTAC department, contact Leslie Miller at 509.321.3641