Introduction to Government/Corporate Contracting
Corporate Contracting. Government Procurement. Think about how much government agencies and corporations spend annually. Trillions and trillions of dollars. The federal government alone is $4.8 trillion.
Guided Business Plan’s goal is to expand underrepresented entrepreneurs’ access to business opportunities at all levels. Really to inspire 100k Urban Entrepreneurs to pursue bigger ASKs that lead to a job-creation level of business ownership. That was our goal soon after we launched. Ready to be part of the movement?
Corporate procurement. Government contracting. What can your business sell to one of these entities?
- Local, state, and federal government
- Corporations headquartered in your city
- Retail stores in your neighborhood
Depending on what stage your business is and how much experience you have, you may be ready to pursue a very large contract. A large contract depends on your business. A $50,000 contract could be the biggest one you have ever had. You may be ready to compete for a $1,000,000 contract or even greater.
If you are an established business who does not currently have a corporate or government contract, there may be several reasons why you have not looked into it.
- Maybe you think your company is too small for a government contract.
- Or maybe you do not have enough time to invest in learning about the process.
- Maybe you don’t think you have enough money and resources, etc.
Envision a role model. Think about who you know who has a business already, who might have a contract with your city government, or works with the military. At some point, these business owners heard about contacting from someone and decided to learn more. And then act. And then earn.
We’re hoping that because you’re reading this, right now, you take this as a sign that contracting with large public/private sector entities might be just what your business needs.
Corporate Procurement (aka corporate clients)
Major corporations invest time and resources into scouting for diverse suppliers who can add value. Even though they may have a vendor in place who’s doing a fine job, there could be another vendor who has a more unique spin on it that leads to a greater ROI (return on investment).
Supplier Diversity + Inclusion
Employees responsible for outreach and supporting diverse vendors are typically part of the Supplier Inclusion Team. These are examples of job titles for professionals who serve as a liaison and monitor utilization of diverse suppliers at their company.
- Supplier Diversity Director
- Supplier Inclusion Manager
- Business Outreach
- Chief Equity Officer
Part of their job is to go out to events and to partner with other organizations to find diverse owned companies who are interested in bidding on contracts with their company. They often look for certified companies to transact with.
Why do corporations invest in supply inclusion? There are several reasons and it really depends on the organization. Some of the common ones are:
- Smaller companies can be more agile than companies with hundreds of thousands of employees.
- There are fewer approval letter levels so things may get done a little bit faster.
- They want to hear from as many voices as possible – diverse perspectives lead to innovation which leads to profits.
When there are more people submitting bids, they can get more competitive pricing. If they stay with an existing vendor and don’t question the rates, they could be paying more than they need to.
Prepping a new business for future corporate clients
If you are thinking about starting a business, consider who will own it 51% or more, and whether they are eligible for certain certification programs. If you have an existing business that is less than 3 years old, determine how you can add value to a company that already has a contract, which you can explore sub-contracting. If you have been in business for more than 3 years, determine how you can add value and work directly as a Prime or as a subcontractor.
Join our GUIDED community where we talk about the opportunities that are available – subscribe to our social platforms where you will learn “how to” to describe what your offer is — meaning how you could add value to a project. We have free and fee-based levels to support you based on your short-term goals.
Some of the things you’ll learn by being part of our GUIDED community…
Supplier inclusion and certification – we make it really simple in terms of what that means for your business. What to expect from the bidding process.. And most importantly, we will tell you about resources where you can get on going for free, no cost to you, one and one help to make this happen.
Our objective is to get you on the path to figure out what your next step might be.
What did this corporate procurement team in the picture buy for this space?
Possible answers are art (interior decorator or local artist), furniture, custom table, light bulbs, window washing, light fixtures, cleaning services. These goods and services may have come from a small business.
What could you sell to this procurement team?
Start by creating a smooth introduction.
What does your company do exceptionally well? Think about the products and services you sell.
If a vendor approaches a prospective corporation and starts rattling off everything that their company is capable of doing, the prospect will probably lose interest real quick because it’s too much information to take in.
Translate it – make it easier for your prospect by focusing on the main things that you offer. These are considered your core competencies.
When a potential buyer says “what do you do”, they do not want a long list of items or a bunch of adjectives. They want to know what specific products or services you offer. They want to know how you will add value to the project.
A printing company may offer promotional items, signage, event displays, offset printing, and they probably do a whole bunch of other things such as business cards, postcards, or flyers, etc. But they don’t need to list all that here when they are meeting someone for the first time.
Think about what the potential client really wants to buy. The printer could introduce themselves with: we provide marketing collateral to impress stakeholders that leads to further engagement.
Now they could tailor that to a prospect in the water industry: we cultivate trusted partnerships between utilities and their customers with local marketing and print services.
Now they could focus on a particular issue: we empower water utilities’ customers to embrace conservation with our story-telling print and marketing services.
Wasted words waste time. I know this first hand. If your message is not clear, a prospect is not sure what action to take next so they move on to the next vendor.
If you’re an entrepreneur who is interested in government contracting or corporate procurement, make sure to join our GUIDED community. We have free and fee-based levels of support to help you pursue opportunities at all levels. In addition, we provide information on how to describe your offer so that you can add value to a project. Join us today and let’s work together to expand access to business opportunities!