Monday, January 9, 2023

How To Get A Government Contract For Trucking

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Register In The System For Award Management

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The System for Award Management is a database of companies that are interested in government contracts, maintained by the U.S. government. Whereas a business customer in the private sector might come across your business on Google, LinkedIn, or some other search or social network, decision-makers at government agencies use SAM to identify potential vendors.

For this reason, small businesses looking to obtain government contracts should invest a similar level of effort into creating a compelling and search-friendly SAM profile as they would spend on SEO strategy or your companyâs LinkedIn profile.

To get started, your business will need to register as a government vendor in the SAM system. While your SAM profile must be updated at least once a year to remain active, firms committed to obtaining government contracts should update and refine their SAM profile at least quarterly, if not monthly or more.

Remember that although youâre pitching to government agencies, the decision-makers within those agencies are real people. Avoid the temptation to fall into overly technical and bureaucratic descriptions of your products or services. Working with a government agency doesnât require stifling the personality behind your brand!

Follow The Uniform Contract Format

No matter the type, all solicitations share the expectation that aspiring contractors follow a specific format. Success in procuring government contracts has as much to do with your ability to follow instructions in the proposal formatting and submission process as the substance of your proposal. So, make sure that you follow all schedules and forms within the solicitation in the exact order, structure, and time frame requested. The SBAâs free âGovernment Contracting 101â online course is a great resource for in-depth understanding of the purpose, forms, and expectations for each of the 10 sections within the Uniform Contract Format.

How To Government Contracts For Box Trucks In 10 Steps

Sure, there are several government contract opportunities for box truck operators in the United States of America and this can be gotten through the Federal government contracting system. It is important to note that if you run a small registered box truck business, then you stand the chance of getting support from the government.

This is because the U.S government has policies in place that supports small and disadvantaged businesses. The federal government tries to award a significant percentage of all federal government contracting dollars to small businesses.

In addition, the federal government tries to award a certain percentage of contracts to businesses in the following categories: women-owned small businesses, minority-owned businesses, and service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses. Please note that there are two broad categories of government contractors and you must be able to identify both to be able to know where you belong.

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How To Get Government Construction Contracts: What To Know And How To Bid

If youre running a small construction business, getting construction government contracts can be a game changer. Census data shows that federal, state, and local governments spend as much as $350 billion annually on construction.

In particular, the federal government is required to spend 23% of its federal contracting dollars on small businesses. For an individual construction firm, winning a government contract can mean a lucrative source of income.

There are other benefits: government agencies tend to be reliable buyers that pay good prices and often prefer to hire construction contractors theyve worked with before. However, compared to bidding with a private company, construction government contracts are more regulated, but the process is usually more transparent.

So how do you break in? To bid on government construction contracts and win, you have to learn how to navigate a new system. For the sake of simplicity, this guide focuses on federal government contracts but many of these principles apply to state and local levels too. Here are some tips on how to succeed.

What Specialty Loads Can You Ship

semi truck lease agreement

Figure out how to narrow down your services so that you can market something specific. This will greatly affect how you present your business and how you invest your money.

  • Equipment: Investing in the right equipment is determined by your target client. For example:
  • Perishable items such as food or meat would require trucking equipment with cold storage capabilities.
  • Raw materials, such as pipes, steel frames, wood, and other construction materials often need flatbed trailers.
  • Funding: Are you leasing or buying your equipment for your new business? It probably depends on the service youre offering.
  • National Funding can provide small business loans for semi-truck financing and other leasing equipment options to build your fleet.

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The Importance Of Trucking Contracts

The challenges that new trucking companies face can seem insurmountable at times. Even though thats the case, long-term success is attainable. It all starts with securing that highly coveted first trucking contract. By employing the correct techniques, the process of finding that first trucking contract could be easier than you think!

The Government Moves Tons Of Freight

One way to get steady work that pays is to find government contracts for freight. The U.S. government moves quite a bit of freight, including specialized cargo. For example, the U.S. Postal Service is well-known for moving a lot of freight.

Becoming a government-approved contractor is a time-consuming process. Furthermore, finding bids, submitting proposals, and winning them takes effort. Become familiar with the process before you get started. You can find government contract opportunities at Sam.gov.

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Determine Your Business Size

You might assume that determining your businessâs size doesnt require much thought. However, for the purposes of qualifying for government contracts for small businesses, you need to qualify according to SBA size standards.To help you easily answer this question, the SBA offers a Size Standards Tool, which uses your NAICS number along with some basic information about your business to determine whether it qualifies as an SBA-designated small business.

Transportation Payment And Audit Regulation

Crowley Supports Small Business Growth Through the Defense Freight Transportation Services Contract

47.103-1 General.

Regulations and procedures governing the bill of lading, documentation, payment, and audit of transportation services acquired by the United States Government are prescribed in 41 CFR part 102-118, Transportation Payment and Audit.

For DoD shipments, corresponding guidance is in DoD 4500.9-R, Defense Transportation Regulation, Part II.

Under 31 U.S.C. 3726, all agencies are required to establish a prepayment audit program. For details on the establishment of a prepayment audit, see 41 CFR part 102-118.

The agency designated in paragraph of the clause at 52.247-67shall forward original copies of paid freight bills/invoices, bills of lading, passenger coupons, and supporting documents as soon as possible following the end of the month, in one package for postpayment audit to the General Services Administration, Transportation Audit Division , Crystal Plaza 4, Room 300, 2200 Crystal Drive, Arlington, VA 22202. The specified agency shall include the paid freight bills/invoices, bills of lading, passenger coupons, and supporting documents for first-tier subcontractors under a cost-reimbursement contract. If the inclusion of the paid freight bills/invoices, bills of lading, passenger coupons, and supporting documents for any subcontractor in the shipment is not practicable, the documents may be forwarded to GSA in a separate package.

The name and address of the specified agency

The name and address of the contracting office

47.103-2 Contract clause.

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Bid On Government Contracts

You can obtain significant work for your dump truck business by bidding on government contracts. These contracts can be at the federal, state or local level and can range in scope and size from very large contracts to contracts that may only require one or two dump trucks .

So how do you get started?

You can search your states department of transportation website to check out potential bidding opportunities. If you happen to be a small business or are female or minority owned, you may enjoy certain advantages during the bidding process as compared to large, non-minority owned companies.

In addition, if you are a smaller operator, you can score government contracts by acting as a subcontractor to a large contractor who has been awarded the government contract. Its a convenient way to piggyback off the strength and reputation of a much larger and more established contractor.

The key, of course, is to establish good relationships with these types of larger contractors so theyll use you. You will need to demonstrate both solid pricing, reliability and flexibility to gain their trust. It might take some time until you can build up a good enough reputation to land these subcontracting gigs, so you will need to be patient, but the payoff can be worth it.

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Preparation Of Solicitations And Contracts

Contracting officers shall prepare solicitations and contracts for transportation or for transportation-related services as prescribed elsewhere in the FAR for fixed-price service contracts to the extent that those requirements are applicable and not inconsistent with the requirements in subpart 47.2.

In addition, the contracting officer shall include in solicitations and contracts for transportation or for transportation-related services provisions, clauses, and instructions as prescribed in section 47.207.

Starting A Trucking Business: Obtain Clients

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The trucking industry is a highly competitive, demanding business, and trucking business owners need to be proactive in finding customers. If youre an owner, check online bidding sites for available accounts and contracts. A number of sites focus on contract bidding.

In many cases, the owner who offers the lowest bid lands a contract. Although it wont result in a lot of profit, bidding low is usually best for startups. Other avenues for finding clients and contracts include placing classified ads.

Remember that no matter how great your fleet is, making your clients happy is very important. Satisfied clients often recommend quality trucking companies to people they know. This is why its vital to provide the best service you can during all phases of transport before, during, and after the job.

In addition, when clients receive excellent service, theyre much more likely to come back to you.

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Becoming A Government Contractor

The U.S. government is the worlds largest purchaser of goods and services. By law, the government is required to provide opportunities for small businesses. The government wants to contract with small trucking businesses, particularly those owned by veterans and minorities.

To get started as a government contractor, follow these steps:

Tips For Becoming Actively Involved In Subcontracting

Small Business Administrations Subcontracting Network and Subcontracting Opportunities Directory

The Small Business Administration hosts the Subcontracting Network website, Sub-Net, where prime contractors may post subcontracting opportunities. These opportunities are often reserved for small business and may include solicitations or other announcements, including sources sought notices for teaming as partners or subcontractors on future contracts. Sub-Net allows small business to search for opportunities by SIC code, NAICS code, generic description, or solicitation number. SBA also has a Subcontracting Opportunities Directory which lists, by state, primes with a subcontracting plan.

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Seek A Subcontracting Opportunity

While the SAM.gov database handles direct contracts with government agenciesâknown in government terms as prime contractsâthere is another form of government contracts for small businesses to explore: subcontracting.

As the name suggests, subcontracting opportunities involve negotiating contracts with current government contractors to complete a portion of the work designated by the prime contractors. In other words, subcontractors are the vendorâs vendor. Subcontracting on government contracts can be both a lucrative business opportunity and a chance to learn more about government contracting before attempting to bid on prime contracts directly with the U.S. government.

Similar to SAM.gov, the SBA maintains a searchable database called SUB-Net that highlights available subcontracting opportunities. If youâre just getting started with government contracting or would like a layer of experience between government agency clientele and your own business, searching SUB-Net for subcontracting opportunities is a great starting point.

Who Is Your Target Audience

Bid on Foreign Government Procurement

Connect with the right people that are trustworthy and interested in your specific service. You should also look for other businesses that arent getting picked up by larger carriers. Look for clients who:

  • Pay accurately, fairly, and on time
  • Give you contracts regularly
  • Fall through the cracks for big-name carriers

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Can You Afford To Sign On New Shippers

We finish this article by asking a simple question. Can your business afford to take on new shippers? To many, this sounds like an obvious question. Of course, you can take on new shippers. However, there is a financial catch. Many shippers dont offer quick pays. Instead, they pay their invoices in 30 to 60 days. This situation can create cash flow problems for truckers who need funds to pay for fuel, repairs, and salaries. These problems can get worse if you add clients quickly.

You can solve this problem by using freight factoring. Factoring improves your cash flow by advancing funds against your slow-paying invoices. This solution gives you funds to run your trucking company and grow. Many factoring companies also offer fuel advances and other additional benefits. If you need a factoring quote, contact us at 300 3258.

How Do Truckers Get Clients

Finding a Freight Broker for Owners or Fleet OwnersOwner Operators as well as Fleet Owners may use Dispatch ServicesOwner Operators should consider a good load board. Registering as a government contractor.Find out how to get Freight Contracts for Owner OperatorsThere is nothing wrong with networking.Own the load Broker your Own Loads.

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Minority Small Business & Capital Ownership Development 8 Program

The 8 Program is SBAâs effort to promote equal access for socially and economically disadvantaged individuals to participate in the business sector of the nationâs economy.

Socially and economically disadvantaged individuals include Black Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, and others designated by the SBA.

The program recognizes the historical lack of equal access that minorities and other disadvantaged individuals have had to the resources needed to develop their small businesses. The program assists 8 approved firms to participate in the business sector and to become independently competitive in the marketplace. The assistance available includes access to federal government contracts as well as management and technical assistance programs.

The Small Business Administration provides additional details on the benefits and eligibility for each certification. You can also contact them at 973-645-2531

Government Transportation Contract Factoring

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If youre hauling government freight such as the Federal Emergency Management Agency loads or Department of Transportation loads, factoring ensures your trucking company will get paid faster.

Even if youre booking loads through a freight broker, payment for government loads will trickle in slower than your typical haul. Government contracts are slow-paying to start with. Plus, the broker must deal with the paperwork and documentation required by government agencies.

Demand is often high for disaster relief loads. Disaster recovery presents an opportunity to earn money and offer a helping hand during unfortunate events. Trucking services are desperately needed for disaster relief, but these hauls can easily strain your cash flow due to extra delays, longer waits to unload and additional challenges. If youre jumping into hauling for disaster relief efforts, consider working with a factoring company for FEMA loads or other government freight contracts.

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Broker Your Own Loads

After doing all of the above are you still having a hard time solving how to find loads to haul? It might be time to think about becoming a freight broker to broker your own loads. This is probably the most complex way to find loads for trucking and the lead time is substantial. You will need to train to be a broker, either with an established broker or by taking some classes. The payoff of being your own broker could be huge but it might not be a gamble youre comfortable with.

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How Next Helps Construction Contractors Succeed

At NEXT, getting coverage for your construction business is fast, easy and affordable.

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What Are The Easiest Government Contracts To Win

The best way to determine the likelihood of winning is to look at your companys past performance. If you dont have relevant past performance, teaming up with other companies can be effective.

Make sure your team is comprised of companies that have a strong track record of success in similar contracts, as well as companies that have won contracts in the location and agency youre targeting.

The GSA Schedule contract is the easiest government contract to win because its a long-standing contract with commercial industries providing the government access to millions of commercial services and products at affordable prices.

Aside from the GSA, there is no definite answer to what is the easiest government contract a small business can get. However, certain industries have more opportunities than others. Some of these include:

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