Maryland Small Business Development Center

Government Contracting

Governments Spend Billions

Each year, federal, state and local governments buy billions of dollars worth of goods and services through prime and subcontract awards. The total spending for federal, state and local governments is approximately $6 trillion. Almost 3 million public procurement opportunities from federal, state and local governments are made available annually. That's approximately 5,000 to 8,000 new bid opportunities daily.

Location Matters

The U.S. Federal Government is the single largest buyer of goods and services in the world and about 25% goes to small businesses. For years, the state has benefited from its proximity to the nations capital. Since FY2000, Maryland has continued to rank 4th among states in per-capita federal procurement spending.

Gain an Edge

Because increased competition benefits both the public and private sectors, government buyers are constantly seeking to add new sources to their supplier base. To gain an edge when bidding contracts, small businesses can be certified though a number of state and federal programs.

No-Cost Government Contracting Assistance

The SBDC manages the Maryland Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP) , now called APEX , that provides marketing, contractual and technical assistance to existing Maryland small businesses interested in selling their products and services to government agencies. Maryland PTAP offers training and no-cost counseling to companies to help them identify, bid, and perform on government prime and sub contracts at the federal, state, and local levels.

SBDC encourages local businesses to partake in government procurement opportunities

Federal Government Contracting

Below are the first 5 steps for Federal Contracting that an MDSBTDC consultant will assist you with to get you ready for more targeted PTAP Federal government contracting guidance.

  • Step 1: Know your market niche. Determine your optimal  North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) Code(s).
  • Step 2: Prove that you provide high quality products/services. Develop references and project descriptions that demonstrate your firm's proven track record of success.
  • Step 3: Register your company. To be eligible for contract awards and payments, register in the System for Award Management (SAM) and complete your SBA Profile, accessible there as well. You'll need the following: DUNS (Data Universal Numbering System) number; TIN or EIN (Tax Identification Number/Employer Identification Number); NAICS Code(s); and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Information. Also register with the individual procurement offices that you may be dealing with.
  • Step 4: Research eligibility and apply for SBA certifications. Take full advantage of any certifications you can obtain. Certifications make your company eligible for restricted-competition and non-competitive contracts, and/or price preferences. Certifications include: Small Disadvantaged Business, Woman-Owned Small Business, Veteran-Owned, and Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned, 8(a) Business Development, and HUBZone.
  • Step 5: Prepare your marketing tools. Maximize your company's web presence. Prepare to accept credit cards. Create a one-page Capability Statement for purchasing offices that identifies your company's certifications, overview and experience as they relate to a specific or general opportunity being sought. Also prepare a second, more comprehensive Capability Statement that provides a complete overview of your company, with success stories, features and benefits for end users and others involved in the buying decision.

Other Federal Government Contracting Resources

State of Maryland Government Contracting

First Steps to Maryland State Contracting

Other Maryland Government Contracting Resources

Local Government Contracting (Counties and Municipalities)

County and Municipality Government Contracting Resources

Some County and Municipality procurement opportunities can be found at eMarylandMarketplace. But others are accessible only at each jurisdiction's website. In addition, minority certifications can sometimes be obtained from Maryland's counties and cities, each with different criteria set by those levels of government. These certifications allow the business owner to appreciate special benefits and access to resources provided by the specific agency. The MDSBTDC can assist small businesses in preparing for those certifications. Review any jurisdiction's website for information on how to do business with it:

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