The Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) is the United States’ combat logistics support agency. The DLA manages the end-to-end global defense supply chain for the five military services, 11 combatant commands, other federal, state, and local agencies, and partner and allied nations. DLA’s mission is to “deliver readiness and lethality to the Warfighter Always and support our nation through quality, proactive global logistics.”
With a mission of such a sweeping scope, you might think that DLA must spend a sizeable amount on procurement annually. You’d be right: DLA procures more than $41.8 billion in goods and services each and every year. As a government contractor, if you ignore the DLA, you are leaving sizable revenue opportunities on the table. Frequently, government contractors shy away from working with DLA due to additional registration and knowledge requirements.
For anyone interested in federal contracting FAMR highly recommends that a business is registered within DIBBS.
In this guide, we’ll break down how to set your business up for success by best leveraging DIBBS.
DLA Internet Bid Board System (DIBBS)
The portal for contractors to submit quotes and proposals for a DLA solicitation is known as the DLA Internet Bid Board System (DIBBS). Within DIBBS, you will find opportunities listed as Request for Quotes (RFQs) and Request for Proposals (RFPs). Through DIBBS, users can search for and view these RFQs and RFPs as well as Invitations for Bid (IFB), awards, and other procurement information.
Here are some further details on RFQs, RFPs, and IFBs:
Request for quotes (RFQs)
Contracts totaling under $100,000
On average, opportunities are for less than $4,000
More common than Request For Proposals (RFPs)
Generally quoted on the website
30-35% are awarded automatically without human intervention
Request for Proposals (RFPs)
Contracts totaling over $100,000
More of an involved process to complete
Proposals may be negotiated
Invitations for Bid (IFB)
Solicitation document used to solicit bid responses for non-IT goods or IT goods and/or services
Three types of IFB formats: one for non-IT goods and two for IT purchases
For non-IT goods procurements exceeding $100,000, the use of IFB is required
How to Register on DIBBS
Prior to registering for DIBBS, vendors must have a DUNS number and be registered in the SAM as DIBBS completes certain information by accessing SAM data. Although a comprehensive guide on system requirements and instructions on registration can be found on the DIBBS Help Page, here are the primary steps required to register:
A CAGE’s registration will be processed immediately. A User ID will appear on the registration screen, and a temporary identification number (TIN) will be sent separately to the email address of the identified Super User to enable the Super User to create a password. If a CAGE is already registered on DIBBS, the name and email address of the Super User will be provided. The Super User should be contacted by DLA to set up additional accounts, logins, and passwords for their CAGE.
The Super User is the individual who controls the DIBBS account and can change the following: DIBBS Super User Password, Vendor Profile, and Users Profile.
Upon completion of the DIBBS registration process, double-check the information that SAM has ported into DIBBS to ensure it is accurate.
How to Source DLA Opportunities with DIBBS
As mentioned above, through DIBBS, users can search for and view Requests for Quotes (RFQs), Requests for Proposal (RFPs), and Invitations for Bid (IFB), Awards, and other procurement information. This section will briefly cover how to source and submit an RFQ.
RFQ Solicitation Search Criteria
Once registered and in the DIBBS portal, a prospective federal contractor will need to have the following information to perform a search:
Federal Supply Class (FSC): The first four digits of an NSN identifying the group and class of an item (e.g., 5905).
National Stock Number (NSN): A 13-digit number consisting of the FSC for the item followed by a nine-digit identification number. This number is used to label and categorize each item that is stocked.
Solicitation Number: A 13-position alpha/numeric document identification number used to communicate government requirements to prospective contractors.
Purchase Request Number: A 10-position numeric document identification number that describes the required supplies so that procurement can be initiated.
Nomenclature: The basic noun designation by which an item is commonly known (e.g., filter element, fluid).
Approved Part Number (P/N): This search is for approved part numbers on NSN buys described by the manufacturer’s CAGE and part number.
Approved CAGE: This search is for approved CAGEs on NSN buys described by the manufacturer’s CAGE and part number.
Upon a search, a user can select the Quote icon to quote on a specific solicitation. Note: if the solicitation has an “SB” icon, it is set aside for small businesses. Here is the process for submitting a quote upon selecting a relevant solicitation to your business:
After locating a solicitation using the RFQ Search, click on the Quote button. Users not logged on at this point will be prompted to do so.
After completing the quote form and reviewing the synopsis for accuracy, click Submit.
Users will receive a message indicating that the submission was “successful” or “unsuccessful.”
Submitted quotes may be viewed until the contract is awarded/canceled. Revisions to quotes submitted on behalf of a CAGE will overlay previously submitted quotes for the same requirement.
Grow Your Business with FAMR’s Help
If you ever have trouble with quoting, you can contact the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) or if you’d like to learn more about FAR in general, be sure to check out our blog on the topic here. We’re always here to help, and if you’re ready to boost your viability in the federal contracting space, FAMR can be a reliable partner in your corner to optimize your chances of winning contracts. Not only that, but we can help you get certifications that might have millions of dollars in contracts that only certified businesses could compete for.