The U.S. Small Business Administration (“SBA”), as well as each federal agency, establishes goals every year to promote small business participation in federal government contracting.
For the first time since 2005, the federal government met its small business contracting goal last year – awarding over $83 billion to small businesses. This is great news for small businesses. Despite the overall decrease in federal spending, it appears that small businesses are getting a sizable piece of the (smaller) pie.
Unfortunately, when it comes to small business subcontracting, federal contractors did not have as much success in meeting the goals for 2013. (Check back soon for more on that front!)
Recently, the SBA published the government-wide Small Business Procurement Scorecard and reported the following prime contracting goals and achievement for FY 2013:
Notably, the federal government met its small business contracting goal by awarding 23.39% of prime contracts to small businesses. Prime contracting to SDB concerns (8.61% in 2013) continues to exceed the 5.00% goal, and SDVOSB prime contracting (3.38% in 2013) steadily increased from 3.03% in 2012 and 2.65% in 2011.
However, there is still room for improvement.
Prime contract achievement for WOSB concerns (4.32% in 2013) improved from 4.00% in 2012 and 3.98% in 2011. But the federal government still fell short of its 5.00% goal in 2013. Additionally, there is a steady drop off in contract dollars awarded to HUBZone concerns (1.76% in 2013) from 2.01% in 2012 and 2.35% in 2011.
The SBA also reported each federal agency’s small business contracting goals and achievement in the Scorecard Summary.
For FY 2013, overachieving agencies include the Department of Interior, Department of Transportation, and the Office of Personnel Management. All three received an A+ grade from the SBA for exceeding their small business contracting goals. To the contrary, the Department of Energy earned a failing grade for the third year in a row – falling short of its 7.00% goal (the smallest goal of any federal agency).
With the successes of 2013 and talks of increasing the small business prime contracting goals, small businesses should be prepared to take advantage of these growing opportunities to contract directly with the federal government. Please feel free to reach out regarding best practices for pursuing these opportunities.