June 7, 2023


I trust Business

Selling to the World’s Largest Customer

7 min read

Lt Col Ricky Howard

This 7 days we’re discovering a distinctive option to turn the world’s premier customer of merchandise and expert services into a buyer of yours.

That’s appropriate, we’re speaking about advertising to the government.

There is nothing like obtaining a consumer that can pretty much print the cash!

But there’s a whole lot of confusion and misunderstandings around finding govt contracts so I have enlisted some professional support to aid us find out how to do it the suitable way.

Retired Lt Col Ricky Howard of DoDContract.com expended decades on the acquiring side for the U.S. Office of Protection and now aids modest businesses like yours get their foot in the door.

Tune in to The Side Hustle Show interview to hear:

  • why there are so several rewarding opportunities with federal government contracts
  • Ricky’s suggestions and best techniques for winning contracts
  • how you can also gain contracts acting as matchmaker or partnering with other small business house owners

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The Possibilities in Authorities Contracting

“It’s an incredible opportunity that most smaller companies really do not know about or really do not consider. Or, if they do try they’re genuinely not confident the place to get started,” Ricky stated.

The authorities is the solitary most important purchaser of items and solutions in the earth, Ricky spelled out.

Moreover, Ricky said that the governing administration is mandated by regulation to invest in from small companies — at least 23% of their investing.

To give you an strategy of what that appears to be like like in pounds, Ricky claimed that the federal government put in all around $154 billion just on smaller organization contracts past 12 months on your own.

And it’s not just for large equipment and defense materials. There is a big total of probable for little firms of all forms to get a slice of the pie.

Just about anything that goes into the infrastructure of a city where army personnel are centered needs to be sourced.

From leisure functions to constructing and protecting office buildings, the scope is exceptionally extensive.

Ricky also reported it’s a fantastic time to pitch contracts to the governing administration correct now. Considerably less than 1% of small businesses are actively selling to the govt, and that variety has been lowering in latest yrs.

Finding Out if the Govt Is Shopping for What You are Providing

“In the community sector, all the information and facts is community,” Ricky explained.

Ricky said it couldn’t be a lot easier to find out who’s accomplishing the investing and what’s currently being purchased than when it will come to the government.

If you want to locate out if the federal government is buying what you are promoting, Ricky recommends obtaining begun by visiting USASpending.gov.


To use the search element on USASpending to locate out if there is a need for your products and services, Ricky gave the following suggestions as an case in point:

  • Go to “Award Search” and pull down the menu, then decide on “Advanced Search”
  • Pick a range masking the previous three a long time for the most related facts. That’ll be “FY 2023,” “FY 2022,” and “FY 2021”
  • Variety your area of interest or service into the “North American Field Classification Process (NAICS)” box to discover out what your governing administration code is. For case in point, if your sort “Painting” into the NAICS box it’ll demonstrate you the code for painting is “238320”
  • You can now search for contracts awarded to smaller companies offering portray companies. Ricky executed this look for and could see about $253 million was invested on painting about the past 3 yrs, and the DoD was responsible for all-around $175 million of that.

This is just a rapid case in point, there is a lot far more you can do with the advanced search filters readily available.

If you commit some time digging into the data you are going to be able to see the varieties of contracts on a more granular degree.

Registering to Provide to the Governing administration

Once you’ve uncovered that the govt is awarding contracts to organizations related to yours, the following action is to go to Sam.gov.

This is in which the federal government repository of all federal contracting data is saved.

You can glimpse up solicitation information on distinct contracts, as properly as sign-up your organization to provide to the authorities.

Ricky stated the procedure of registering your enterprise is self-explanatory, but expect it to take a 7 days or two for all the approvals to go by.

Taking part in Matchmaker or Getting a Subcontractor

If you really don’t have a business or present a provider yourself, you could act as a middleman or matchmaker.

This is referred to as getting a federal government deal “integrator.” Ricky explained currently being an integrator is a well-liked business enterprise model that works well.

You could also be a subcontractor and get the job done with a larger sized key contractor. This allows you to place in a joint bid on a task and do the job with one more business.

This is a excellent way to be awarded contracts that have been set apart for precise enterprise sorts of demographics that only one of you can bid on.

There are some guidelines all over how a lot get the job done the key contractor has to do on a challenge, but it is one more model that will work effectively.

Bidding Strategy

Ricky discussed that if you dive in and start out creating proposals and bidding on contracts, your odds of successful are likely to be pretty lower.

To increase your odds, Ricky advises that in its place of filtering for requests for quotations on careers, you filter on “requests for information” or “sources sought.”

These requests are the govt seeking to determine out how to fix a trouble right before placing a solicitation together.

To make a request for info, you are going to need to have to put together a few web pages of facts answering concerns, and recommending answers as for every the proposal.

The reward of carrying out this is that you’re making contact ahead of the solicitation has come out.

You are putting your corporation identify out there as someone that can do the work and outlining why you are perfect for the deal when it’s produced.

You will often have the solution to ask for a meeting in human being when filling out a ask for for information and facts. This is anything Ricky suggests undertaking as a way of introducing your enterprise.

Bidding Most effective Procedures and Recommendations

When you see a solicitation that you want to set in a bid for, some ideas Ricky shared are:

  • Never add anything that is not asked for in the proposal, it’ll only do the job versus you. Your bid is heading to be scored based on how well you adopted the recommendations.
  • Look at similar contracts that have previously been awarded to get an notion of how significantly to bid. You can use GSA.gov to see for how a lot Basic Companies Administration (GSA) contracts are currently being awarded.
  • Do not be shy to reply and check with what the spending budget appears like. Ricky explained most companies will be eager to notify you what their price range is and that’ll support give you a ballpark figure.

If you’re having difficulties to put together your initially proposal, Ricky explained you can come across a person on Upwork with practical experience composing proposals.

Looking at how a proposal is prepared up by a person with expertise and a monitor document of successful bids is going to be a enormous enable.

Illustrations of Clients Profitable Contracts

Ricky shared a couple of examples of his customers who have received government contracts not too long ago.

A person was a girl who moves furniture for a dwelling. She won a couple of contracts at $16k/ea shifting workplace furniture.

An additional was a female who ran a helpdesk services. From reaching out to the offices and employing requests for details, Ricky was equipped to see that the federal government was transitioning from its legacy helpdesk method to a new technique that assisted individuals with disabilities.

His consumer was able to tap into that need to move from just one particular style of helpdesk program to another. For the past two decades, she has billed all around $1 million a yr.

What is Up coming?

“I’m excited about growing the number of tiny companies offering to the governing administration,” Ricky explained to me.

Ricky has not too long ago set jointly a certification software as portion of his academy that normally takes learners through the measures of successful federal government contracts.

If you want to master additional and enroll in Ricky’s training application, he’s created a coupon code for Side Hustle display listeners that’ll give you 1-month totally free.

Head around to DoDContract.com/academy and form “THESIDEHUSTLESHOW” in the coupon box to claim your totally free month.

Ricky’s #1 Tip for Aspect Hustle Nation

It is a marathon, not a sprint.”

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