The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) is federally mandated by the Department of Transportation to ensure nondiscrimination in the award and administration of Federal contracts. The program creates a level playing field for small companies that are Black, Hispanic, Native Americans, Asian-Pacific Islanders, Subcontinent Asians, or women owned . Also known as DBE/WBE certification and the WBE stands for Women Business Enterprise.
The SBA 8(a) program is where a company enters into a 9 year partnership with the SBA to develop and grow their business. Also any business accepted into the program automatically qualifies for SDB certification after the 9 years is up.
The Hubzone program provides contracting assistance to companies located in historically underutilized businesses zones as prescribed by the SBA. The primary purpose of the program is to encourage economic development and increase employment in these distressed urban and rural areas. Certified businesses qualify for: 1. Competitive Hubzone contracts 2. Sole source Hubzone contracts 3. Full and Open Competitive Contracts (price evaluation preference).
Below are some helpful Links to organizations that offer free assistance:
- The Center for Veterans (CVE) – The CVE provides a database that complies all veteran-owned small businesses and service-connected disabled veteran-owned businesses. The center also provides Vendor Information Pages that promote registered veteran-owned businesses to prime contractors and to the federal government. The CVE website provides links to the federal procurement pages, assistance program pages and more.
- The Veterans Corporation (TVC) – TVC provides veteran-owned small businesses and service-connected veteran-owned businesses with resources for education opportunities, capital, surety boding, insurance and prescription coverage, advertising, business formation and other business services. They also provide a veterans business directory and a veteran business incubator.
Woman-owned Small Business (WOSB)
To help provide a level playing field for women business owners, the government limits competition for certain contracts to businesses that participate in the WOSB Federal Contracting Program.
These contracts are for specific industries where women-owned small businesses (WOSBs) are underrepresented. Some contracts are restricted further to economically disadvantaged women-owned small businesses (EDWOSBs). The SBA maintains a list of those eligible industries and their NAICS codes.
Joining the WOSB Federal Contracting Program makes a business eligible to compete for federal contracts set aside for the program. Firms can still compete for contract awards under other socio-economic programs they qualify for.
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is responsible for the management and oversight of the small business procurement process across the Federal Government. SBA negotiates with Federal departments concerning their prime contracting goals and achievement with small businesses to ensure that small businesses have the maximum practicable opportunity to provide goods and services to the Federal Government.