Veteran Owned Business Contracting 101: Simplified Acquisitions
Veteran Owned Business Contracting 101 Series
How to Get Your Business Started in Government Contracting
Another Chapter in the ongoing Veteran Owned Business Resource Series “Contracting 101” details about the Governments “Simplified Acquisition Process (SAP).”
The Simplified Acquisition Process is used in Federal purchases between $3,000 up to $150,000, and unlike the typical procurement process, most SAP purchases originate from a request for quotes (RFQ) instead of request for proposal (RFP). With an RFQ, the government has to respond to you with a purchase order, and you (as the vendor) hold the option to accept or not. The RFQ process does seem to favor the vendor, bidders in the RFP process are bound by the price they propose. SAP purchases, can happen quickly, and vendors can receive payment quickly too.
The SAP process differs from traditional procurement in other ways, as it involves a bit more effort identifying opportunities, but in that effort can be found great rewards. In fiscal year 2010, the government spent over $11 Billion through Simplified Acquisitions, and over half of that ($6 Billion+) went to small businesses. Contacting agency offices of small and disadvantaged business utilization can direct you to contacts. Veteran Owned Business also recommends searching agency websites for the phrase “Simplified Acquisition.” There you can identify the government buyers authorized to conduct SAP Purchases, which codes they support, phone numbers, email addresses. Once you have identified your contacts, reach out first with a phone call. Verify who is responsible for buying the services or supplies you provide and go from there. Email is an unreliable method of contacting government buyers, especially with electronic security measures.
A final benefit with starting with SAP purchases, is they are an excellent first step to winning larger projects, as a lot of procurement personnel you develop relationships with on SAP purchases, also are project managers for much larger contracts. Selling through the Simplified Acquisition Process is a great way to build a reputation.
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