Thursday, November 24, 2022

How To Bid On Government Contract Jobs

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Breaking The Question Down

Government contract jobs -10 Best Practices for Winning Government Contract Jobs – TendersPage

An example question: Please provide your strategy for sourcing and recruiting subcontractors and for ensuring that you can effectively monitor, measure and exercise executive control

You should respond by providing your strategy for:

  • sourcing subcontractors

Combine different types of sentence to construct an effective answer.

Feature sentence

Sets out a specific element or activity within the solution.

Method sentence

Describes the process through which you will deliver this activity or element.

Value sentence

How this activity offers efficiency, effectiveness or value against the specification.

Evidence sentence

Provides evidence of established competency relevant to the proposed activity.

Advantage sentence

Explains how this competency better qualifies the bidder to deliver the service.

Sentences example: insulation

Feature sentence: we will install 300mm of loose-fill cellulose thermal insulation in all new build walls.

Method sentence: insulation will be delivered on site and sprayed using blowers into wall cavities by our NVQ diploma qualified insulation engineers.

Value sentence: our solution exceeds minimum required Building Regulations and, by using cellulose insulation, ensures the most eco-friendly form of insulation.

Evidence sentence: last year our team insulated over 50 different properties using these techniques, with a 98% completion rate on time and budget.

Bid Protests: What They Are And How They Work

If any actual or prospective bidder who has a direct economic interest in the project believes that the bidding process failed to properly conform to the federal contracting laws, that bidder may submit a protest of the award. Bid protests are incredibly common. Over the course of a year, the Government Accountability Office resolves over 1,500 bid protests.

If you wish to file a bid protest, you must file a timely protest letter with the contracting officer. The letter should contain a detailed statement of the legal and factual grounds for the protest and should explain how your business was harmed by the contract not being awarded. If the contracting officer is unable to resolve the complaint, then the complaint should be filed with the Government Accountability Office. Due to the legal and technical nature of filing a bid protest, it is highly recommended that bidders planning to file a protest should seek legal counsel.

If your company has won a contract, you will be notified of a bid protest, and the contract will likely be put on hold until the protest can be resolved. In many cases, bid protests will be resolved very quickly. In other cases, bid protests may become tied up in the administrative courts system and take months if not years to resolve.

Key Invitation To Tender Documents:

Instructions to bidders

A document which explains the competition. For example, timescales and submission requirements.

The specification or service requirement

This provides a breakdown of what it is that the purchaser wants to buy.

The tender response document

Questions to be answered which determine your bid score.

The pricing response document

Typically a spreadsheet breaking down your costs and proposed payment profile.

The standard contract

The standard agreement the purchaser will require you to sign if you are the winning bidder.

These documents will be provided to you as proceed through the tender process.

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Register Your Business At Sam

This must be done before you even attempt tobid for government contracts. In order to become a government contractor, youneed to register at System for Award Management . This is free, butrequires certain preparations. For instance, you need to get you DUNS number,get a Taxpayer identification number and the NAICS code.

The complete step-by-step guide on registering in the SAM system can be found here.

How To Find Out About Bid Opportunities

PPT

Many departments and agencies have the delegated authority to purchase their own goods valued at $25,000 or less and services or construction contracts valued at $40,000 or less without Public Works and Government Services Canada . Therefore, it is important to promote your goods and/or services to them.

You should also consult the Tenders minisite to keep track of requirements that departments and agencies publicly advertise.

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Getting Your Tender Perfect Every Time

Keep sentences and paragraphs short and punchy

Use bullet points and headings to break up text

Decide on a clear typesetting, layout and font size and stick to them throughout

Be careful if cutting and pasting copy to make sure the format stays the same and nothing is lost or duplicated

Develop a logical argument in your tender which showcases your solution in a clear way

Read everything again, then get a colleague to read it for meaning, typing mistakes and omissions. A fresh pair of eyes is always welcome

Use clearly identified appendices for supporting additional information

How To Structure Your Answer

  • if the question includes bullet points, adopt these as subheadings. With equal space allocated to each
  • if there are no bullets, break down the different elements of the question to determine the best answer structure
  • address each point in the same order as they appear within the question
  • avoid extra subheadings which distract from the core wording of the question

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Finding Government Contracts To Bid On

There are several ways to find federal government bid opportunities. Some of them are more efficient than others, but make a habit to periodically check all of them.

Search for bidding opportunities at SAM.gov

Previously,the main source for contracting opportunities was Federal Business Opportunitywebsite, or fbo.gov. Now, the FedBizOpps isobsolete, and all the juicy government business opportunities can be found at Sam.gov instead.

The mainreason why sam.gov is crucial for locating open government contracts is thatfederal agencies are obliged to publish all contracts above $25,000 there.Which means a lot of contracts are advertised at any given time.

And what about contracts below $25,000? They are put on a government charge card, so you will need to contact with a procurement contracting officer directly to find out when the bid is open.

Consider Becoming A Subcontractor

Steps to getting Government Cleaning Contracts

You do not have to do business directly with the government. In fact, becoming a subcontractor for a larger company will spare you much of the time and paperwork that goes with government bidding. Large government suppliers have their own data networks and you may have to register with them to become a subcontractor. Another resource is Supplier Connection, an IBM-powered website that connects small businesses with major government suppliers like AT& T, Du Pont, UPS and more.

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Establish Relationships With Procurement Officers

WhileGovernment may sound very depersonalized, in fact there are real men of fleshand blood behind every accepted and rejected bid Contracting Officers.Building relationships with Officers can indeed help to secure a contract.

Communicatewith the officer assigned to the solicitation you bid to. Send a follow up aftera week or two after submitting your bid. Send another one if you didnt get theanswer. Make sure to communicate professionally and benevolently. Yes, the fateof your submission depends on this particular man or woman, but that does notmean he or she owes you anything. Simply show your sincere interest in thesolicitation and demonstrate your professionalism.

With everything else being equal, your good relationship with the procurement officer may become the final decisive factor in whether you win the bid or not.

Final Words Of Advice

Dont give up on trying to get a contract. According to Susan Sobbott, president of American Express OPEN, Preparing for a government contract is like training for a marathon, and it can take years before a contractor gets its first federal contract. Be realistic about your company’s ability to perform a contract. If you cant finish one, you greatly reduce your chances of ever getting another contract.

References

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Tip #: Prove Your Point

Your company is the best at what you do, right?

Prove it.

Its not enough to make an assertion, you need to go further. Back up what youre saying with examples, statistics, awards youve won, charts, supporting information. Anything that proves that you can do what you say.

Dont assume that the buyer will simply take your word for it. Even if youve worked with this authority before, dont assume that they will remember the last time you won a contract with them or how well you performed.

Remind them and back it up every time.

Dont assume that the buyer will simply take your word for it. Even if youve worked with this authority before, dont assume that they will remember the last time you won a contract with them or how well you performed.

Remind them and back it up every time.

When Does The Government Ask For A Performance Bond

How to Set Your Business Up to Bid on Federal Government ...

We have already established that this bond is important for the contract. But there are unique times that the governments require contractors to have performance bonds and they include

  • a) When the government offers its properties and funds to aid the completion of the project. As well as if the contractor gets to retain the salvaged materials or the funds to act as partial compensation.
  • b) When a merger occurs before the end of the contract or the principal sells their assets to another contractor. The government has to determine if the successor is capable of accomplishing the job. Once a successor has been approved, the successor will present the bond.
  • c) In case the government contract specifies the job involves demolition, or to remove improvements and dismantle the project. This calls for a performance bond as well.
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    Where To Look For Federal Contracts

    There are a number of places to monitor for contract opportunities as the government releases requests for proposals. Use these resources to see the government contracts on which your company could bid.

    • The Contract Opportunities Search Tool on beta.SAM.gov: This is the official database of federal contracting opportunities. You will need to create a profile to bid on contracts through this portal: have your DUNS number ready as well as your NAICS codes.
    • The Dynamic Small Business Search : This is a database that government agencies use to find small business contractors for upcoming contracts. Its maintained by the SBA. You can also use the DSBS to find a small business with which to partner.
    • FedBizOpps.gov: This website is where government agencies are required to advertise all contracts over $25,000.
    • The GSA Schedules Program: This program connects government buyers with contractors. When you get on the GSA schedule, it means youve been approved to do business with the government.
    • SubNet: This is a database of subcontracting opportunities, where a large enterprise looks to partner with a small business on a government contract. This could be a good option if youve never worked on a government contract before and want an enterprise with experience to show you the ropes.

    Bid Evaluation And Award

    Once the government buyer receives all the bids, the evaluation and award process begins. Here is an outline of what happens.

    Non-Negotiated Bids : If the solicitation is an Invitation for Bid a non-negotiated, sealed bid situation where best valued bidder winsthe bid is opened and the information is recorded on what is referred to as a “bid abstract.” This will be used as the bid history database. The abstract contains, in order of opening, the names of the bidding companies, the items being bid, the prices quoted, and any other information that the bidding officer deems relevant.

    This is important information that could prove to be very useful to you, whether you get the bid or not. And since the information contained in the bid abstract is considered public information, you can get it just by asking. The government buying office will send you a copy of the abstract if you enclose a self-addressed stamped envelope along with your bid. You should also include a letter stating that you are requesting the bid abstract under the Freedom of Information Act.

    Tools to use

    Among the Business Tools are Sample Information Requests from Government Officials.

    With this information in hand, you can see where you stand in the bidding process. If your price quote is in the upper third of the price ranking, you are outside the competitive range. If you find yourself in the middle third, you’re getting there. If you are in the lower third, you are in the right place.

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    Read The Solicitation Thoroughly

    Asolicitation package may contain a number of documents, specifications,attachments and requirements: technical conditions, delivery volume and terms,required certifications, what documents you need to submit, and so on. Withhundreds of government contracts out for bid, you should still remember thatevery opportunity is different, and carefully read all the attached documents.Missing a bid opportunity is bad, but much worse is to bid on the contract youhave no way to complete.

    If you have questions ask! Typically, a contracting officer is willing to clarify details about the solicitation, so dont rely on wild guesses when bidding. Make sure you understand every single point of the solicitation you bid on. Also, you may need to read the corresponding FARs that govern the solicitation you are to respond to make sure you know the regulations and requirements.

    Bid competitively

    When thefederal government has contracts for bid, it awaits fair and reasonable pricingbased on the MFC principle. Apparently, you cannot winif you bid too high, but bidding below the ground level is also wrong.Remember: you will need to prove your prices later on by providing actual PriceProposal and Price Narrative documents.

    Study The Tender Document

    How to Price Your Bid for a Government Job with Anna Rose

    Your proposal should be driven by the tender document. It is your guide to winning the contract.

    That means reading the specification carefully, then reading it again. The tender document should tell you everything you need to know about how the buyer wants to receive your bid. This includes the procurement process that will be used, how you will be evaluated and scored, and how the contract will be awarded.

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    Dynamic Small Business Search

    The Small Business Administration maintains the DSBS, a free-to-use website that allows government buyers to view a list of federal contracts specifically designated for small businesses. Each year, around a quarter of all federal contracts, are reserved for small enterprises. But for your business to be considered small, it must meet the following qualifications:

    • It must be a for-profit organization.
    • The company must be independently owned and controlled.
    • For its particular product or service, the corporation cannot have a national monopoly and
    • The company must have an office space situated in the United States or one of its territories and conduct business there.

    Ask For Help At Your Local Ptac

    Procurement Technical Assistance Centers or PTACs provide varied assistance in government contracting, all for free. There you can find out if your business meets the criteria to work with the government. You can get help certifying your business as 8, WOSB or HUBZone. And sure enough a PTAC can help you identifying bid opportunities that your company is eligible to bid.

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    How To Qualify To Get Government Trucking Contracts

    Qualifying for dump truck contracts usually comes first before you can start talking about bidding. Businesses of all types and sizes are allowed to bid for government contracts through municipal and state governments, as well as United States federal agencies.

    These contracts are usually offered for goods and services, or technical assistance and research, including dump truck services. For businesses wanting to get their foot in the door, there are steps to take and qualifications to meet before you can successfully win a contract bid.

    i. Get A TRUCK

    When searching for a dump truck, consider models that are big and powerful enough to guarantee you different types of jobs. Like any vehicle, consider the advantages and disadvantages of buying new versus used dump trucks.

    Before purchasing a truck, review your credit information and finances. Will you be providing a down payment? Additionally, conduct research to get the proper amount of commercial insurance as well as the best rate for your coverage.

    ii. Start with research

    iii. Your business must fit within the description

    Before you can bid for a government contract, your business must fall within the requirements of the government. If the business is reserved for big companies, then you should only bid if your company is within that capacity, but dont bid otherwise. If the contract specifies small businesses, then bid if you fall within that criteria.

    Are You A Small Disadvantaged Business

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    A small disadvantaged business isdefined as a firm that is 51% or moreowned, controlled and operated by aperson who is socially andeconomically disadvantaged. AfricanAmericans, Hispanic Americans, AsianPacific Americans, Subcontinent AsianAmericans, and Native Americans arepresumed to qualify. Other individualscan qualify if they show by a”preponderance of the evidence” thatthey are disadvantaged.Learn more about this.

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    What Government Contracts Require

    When bidding for a government contract, there are certain things you you have to keep in mind. Some of them include

  • Time and resources

  • A lot of businesses, especially the new ones, may not be aware of the number of hours and resources required to pursue and manage a government contract. For example, part of applying for federal contracts involves completing Representations and Certifications.

    These provisions require you to represent and certify to a variety of statements ranging from environmental rules and compliance to entity size. Representations and Certifications are designed to ensure that you are in compliance with laws and regulations and this is an extremely detailed part of the process.

    In addition to taking a great deal of time to complete paperwork, there are legal implications as well. If youre going through this process for the first time or on your own, its advisable to obtain a legal review so you dont make a mistake.

  • Liability Insurance

  • In addition to the time, resources, and credentials needed to obtain a government contract, there may be additional requirements as well. Government contracts, similar to many large commercial contracts, may require additional liability insurance. This is more especially as you are into the dump truck business that typically requires more than the average business insurance.

  • Special invoicing and payment terms

  • Certifications

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