Organizations that meet certain prerequisites (such as operating in an underutilized business location or being owned by U.S. veterans) are eligible for certifications through government agencies such as the SBA, VA, or GSA. These certifications can grant access to even more funding and unique opportunities throughout the federal and private sectors.
In 2011, Congress instated the WOSB program through the Small Business Administration, or SBA. It gives female business owners the opportunities and support they need to excel in industries where women have historically been disproportionately restricted from.
Now, the federal government reserves 5% of the annual contracts to be allocated to WOSB-certified businesses each year. This translates to billions of dollars in exclusive work opportunities that other registered businesses in the federal marketplace can’t apply for.
In 2003, Congress passed the Veterans Benefits Act to jumpstart supplier networks across the nation. It gives Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (VOSBs) the room they need to thrive amongst the larger corporations in their field.
Put simply, Certified Veterans have earned themselves the right to enjoy exclusive contracting opportunities that are restricted from the rest of their competition.
In 1998, Congress enacted the HUBZone Empowerment Act as a part of the Small Business Reauthorization Act. Its purpose was to assist business owners operating in historically underutilized business zones (or HUBZones), and later evolved into the SBA’s HubZone program that we have today.
In compliance with the act, the federal government now reserves 3% of all contracting opportunities allocated each year just for small businesses operating in HUBZones. That means billions of dollars in exclusive government work opportunities, just for being located in an underutilized location of the country.
In 1967, the U.S. Government merged two key federal systems to form the nation’s 8(a) program. This merge gave minority and disadvantaged owners of small businesses support and resources they previously didn’t have access to. The 8(a) Business Development Program helps these disadvantaged businesses succeed and thrive in their industries.
Today, 5% of annual federal contracts are now reserved for 8(a) small business owners. While 5% might not seem like a lot, it’s actually billions of dollars in exclusive work and grant opportunities that businesses who aren’t 8(a)-certified can’t compete for.