There is one question I get asked all the time and maybe this is a question for you too, so definitely check this video out. I get asked all the time about becoming a government contractor and what is the first or next step?
People come to me in various phases, different steps of becoming a government contractor, so today I'm going to actually be answering the question on...
How to become a government contractor?
I'm talking about fast-tracking it. I'm going to give you all the steps, everything you need to consider, think about and implement to fast-track from wherever you are in the process to becoming a government contractor and getting to the point of bidding contracts.
I want to paint the framework of what's possible for you no matter where you're at in the process.
So, before we get into the steps, let me share a story of one of my clients and where she was at when she came to me.
Even if you’ve just started a new business.
Maybe you have an existing business and now you want to transition into something new with the government.
Maybe you already have a successful company in the private sector and now you want to get into government contracting.
This is for you.
The client I’m referring to, her name is Tamara and she was doing virtual assistant work. She decided she wanted to duplicate my success as a government contractor with a construction company.
She came to me for help. She had to start an entirely new business. She had to create the bank account, LLC, and tax information. You know all the foundational stuff that every business must have to be considered a viable business.
We got her registered within 14 days. She received one certification within a month and not long after received the other one. She did all of this in a matter of fewer than three weeks. Three weeks!
Let me recap...she created a whole new business, got it registered, one of her certifications received and the other one she was waiting on all within three weeks.
Within about six weeks she had her first contract.
Within about ten weeks she has two more contracts, so don't tell me wherever you're at in the process it can't happen because it can.
Are you ready to learn what it’s going to require from you to become a government contractor and win some contracts?
I'm going to share with you the steps she had to take which are the steps you have to take. I'm giving you the steps you need to implement, some things to consider, think about, some are to implement. You pick where you're at in the process and then you go from there.
The first thing is all about the MINDSET.
I've touched on this when I shared the case study. No matter where you're at, whatever your thoughts are about government contracting it is possible. No matter what someone else is telling you, it's possible! You have to approach this with the right frame of mind.
If you don't have the right mindset it may be something that you need to work on. I don't teach on mindset. I have a mindset practice that I do and of course, I can share it with you, but I don't generally teach you mindset. You have to come with the right mindset. You know believing you can do it. Know that it's possible.
You're looking at other people that are successful. They're no better than you. They just sat down and did the work. They were committed to it. They focused on the goal. You can do it too!
Don't let the mindset hold you up.
The second thing is you have to look at your CAPACITY.
Where you're at currently in your business as you're going to start bidding contracts. What I mean by this is if you're just starting out realize you're gonna have to bid smaller contracts. Things that you can handle.
If you're starting a brand new business, you don't start with, oh in the next year I want to be making millions. The reality is that's not how it works. Is it possible? Maybe so. Is it the norm? It depends on some other things that I do teach my clients to do but ideally, that's not the norm.
Be realistic in your expectations of:
What do you want?
When you want it?
How fast you want it?
Based on your capacity:
What can you handle?
What type of experience you have?
You need to know your capacity to perform. For example, if you're just starting out, the government is not going to give you a six-figure contract and you have no past experience, it’s just not the norm.
The third thing is and the things I’m sharing here are not in any particular order here, but the third thing you have to look at is your BUSINESS FOUNDATION.
Sometimes I have people come to me that want to get into government contracting and they have a sole proprietor type business or just a DBA, doing business as.
They don't have an entity structure like an LLC, LP or corporation or s-corp. You want to make sure you have your entity structure set up. That's important because the government wants to do business with a company. You know with you along with the smaller business feel where they can access the owners and things like that but it still needs to be a real business.
The fourth thing is you have to QUALIFY to do work with the government.
What I mean is you have to get registered in the government systems.
You can't bypass this step.
I have people coming to me and they're like well you know “I've been looking at contracts to bid, but I'm trying to figure out what's the next step?” And so my question is, well you know I'm checking off the box asking them questions like “Have you done this? Have you done that? Have you registered?”
Those types of questions. They're like no what is that? Well if they don't know what it is they probably haven't done it. So now we got to back up, go back and fill in the gaps so that they are able to fill in the gaps and be a qualified bidder because if you're not registered you're not a qualified bidder.
The next thing is your CERTIFICATIONS.
Now everyone may not qualify for certifications, but if you do you should apply for every certification for which you qualify. Let me just make this distinction here. I'm not talking about the licenses that you may have like your contractor's license, your GC license, or maybe you have some type of professional license that's not what I'm talking about.
I'm talking about certifications that you get with the government to do work with the government. I'm talking about certifications like your DBE, WBE, SDVOB those type of certifications. Any of those for which you qualify, you want to make sure you apply for them.
You can check out some of my other videos on my YouTube channel. I do talk about why you want to have the certifications and the advantages. Just know if you qualify, get it okay.
The next one is your FORMATION DOCUMENTS.
Some people set up their company. They have an entity structure like an LLC, that kind of thing, but they never take the time to set up their formation documents. Well, when you're applying for certifications you're going to need those formation documents.
Make sure you have all of your formation documents in place and really. You should have them as a business anyway. If you don't have the formation documents you need to create them.
The next thing is MARKETING to the government.
A lot of people skip this step. They just go from qualifying to work with the government to bidding contracts.
They get registered.
They apply for any certifications for which they qualify.
But then they stop short and they don't do the marketing.
Marketing your business in the government sector is very important. I'm talking about being visible, meeting and connecting with key decision makers.
Going out to conferences
Contacting the buyers
Connecting with prime contractors
I'm talking about marketing your company letting people know:
Who you are
What you do
What your capabilities are
As well as bidding contracts right.
Once you have your marketing set up which is something you should always be doing you want to start bidding contracts, which is something you should always be doing as well. You can bid as a prime or as a sub. It depends on your capacity and the type of contract.
Any contract that you do bid, you want to make sure you have a chance at winning. Don't waste your time bidding on contracts that you have no shot at winning. This is something that I always preach to my clients. I teach them a better way, although everybody falls into that trap, you don't want to do that.
The next thing is after you start BIDDING.
Not to say you're going to win your first bid, but eventually, you're going to win a contract. That is part of the process of winning a contract. Now, what do you do when you win a contract?
You have to MANAGE the awarded contract and that's a whole other framework of different things that you need to do. You need to manage the awarded contract correctly. You must deliver a successful project.
You have to manage the paperwork, the paper flow, getting paid, and paying your subs if you have subs. All of the paperwork and all of the back-office stuff have to be handled. I can tell you that most companies don’t fall down on a project in the field it is usually in the back office.
I always like to tell people “Don't let your back office prevent success in your front office.”
Once you’ve moved through this process you go back up to the point of
Managing the awarded contracts
Now, it's just, rinse and repeat.
There you have it. I just shared with you how to fast-track your way to becoming a contractor with the government and exactly what you need to do.
Now, I didn't want to take the time in this video, because I didn't want it to be really long for you guys, to dig into the details of what it entails within each one of the steps but I did want to break it down for you.
Which is why I have a free resource, a checklist that you can definitely get your hands on and I'll put the link below. It breaks down the:
Where to start
Phases to move through
What's included in each phase
I share that with you in a free resource that I have for you, 3 Critical Steps To Winning Government Contracts. Grab it now, so you can have it handy as you're going through the process. You can use the checklist to guide you.
The great thing is you can always come back to the video as well, but you won't have to like fast-forward and pause to find out what's next. I've laid it out for you in a checklist.