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Understand on of the best ways to win a government cleaning contracts.

The 4 primary stages of a federal government procurement are:

  • Sources sought

  • Pre-Solicitation

  • Solicitation

  • Award

These stages may sound completely foreign and confusing to you, but I promise by the end of this article you will understand their basic purpose and what it means for you as a government contracting bidder to respond to the different stages.

Let’s begin by understanding the first stage in the procurement process (Sources Sought).

Sources Sought-

A Sources Sought is the government’s form of conducting market research. This is the very beginning stage. When a contracting officer or contracting specialist posts a Sources Sought on, it means they have a contract requirement that they need one or more contractors to perform on. At this stage, contracting may or may not yet have funding for the work being advertised. They are simply “testing the waters” and conducting their due diligence to see what capable companies are out there, and to determine if consideration can be given for a socio-economic set-aside.

You can respond to market research by submitting what is asked for in the notice. Usually, a response will consist of your company’s updated capability statement as well as answering some specific question on how your company would perform the proposed work. Contracting will also want to know your company’s CAGE and DUNS numbers, so they can confirm that you are registered in the SAM database and the Dynamic Search (DSBS) database. A contract is not awarded solely from market research, because you are not submitting a full-blown proposal. The only time a contract award can result from a Sources Sought notice, is when contracting enters a sole source procurement that can only be done with an 8(a) company (this is a topic for another article).

In a nut shell, a Sources Sought is the government’s way of finding out if any small business is even interested and able to perform on their requirement. If contracting does not receive an adequate response from industry, they will open the requirement up to Full and Open Competition where the large companies like Boeing, BAE and Kuka can bid on it. At least for contracting, they know the large companies can do the work. But they may have to pay more, so they often prefer to go the route of small business, so it’s YOUR part to respond to market research any chance you get!

Okay, so you respond to the Sources Sought with your capability statement and answering any questions they’ve asked. What happens next?

Check out our next blog post to continue with the remaining three (3) stages

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