To level the playing field for women business owners, the Federal Government limits competition for certain contracts to businesses participating in SBA’s Women-Owned Small Business (“WOSB”) Federal Contracting Program. Ideally, those contracts are for specific industries where WOSBs are historically underrepresented. And in fact, the Government even has certain WOSB contracting goals to encourage such set-asides. So, its easy to see why the WOSB Program can be a great opportunity for small businesses to get a leg up in the federal contracting world. But don’t let the name fool you, it takes more than just woman-ownership to get in–and stay in. Let’s take a closer look at SBA’s requirements for becoming certified under the WOSB Program.Continue reading
Update 5/14/2020: Since this post was originally published, SBA’s website has clarified when SBA Certification will be available and when Self-Certification will end. The post has been updated to reflect this information.
On Monday, the Small Business Administration will publish a Final Rule updating the certification methods for businesses applying for and participating in the Women-Owned Small Business program. The new Rule will also impose new thresholds for demonstrating economic disadvantage, impacting applicants not only for the WOSB program, but also the 8(a) Business Development program.Continue reading
SBA has issued a final rule, effective December 30, that will now provide an avenue to protest situations where the prime contractor on a SDVOSB, HUBZone, or WOSB set-aside contract is subcontracting most or all of the work to a non-similarly situated—but still small business—concern.
It will also allow SBA to review eligibility for 8(a) Program contracts on this ground as well.Continue reading
Under a multiple award contract, the underlying contract ordinarily governs whether a contractor qualifies as a woman-owned small business for purposes of task or delivery orders.
As demonstrated in a recent SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals decision, if a company qualifies as a WOSB or EDWOSB at the time of its initial offer on the underlying multiple-award contract, it will also qualify as a WOSB or EDWOSB for each order issued against the contract, unless the contracting officer requests recertification in connection with a particular order.
A self-certified woman-owned small business was ineligible for a WOSB set-aside contract because the woman owner’s husband held the company’s highest officer position and appeared to manage its day-to-day operations.
A recent SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals decision highlights the importance of ensuring that a woman be responsible for managing the day-to-day business of a WOSB–and that the woman’s role be reflected both in the corporate paperwork and in practice.
My daughter is learning to take her first steps, while holding onto the furniture. Yesterday, she started pushing her stroller around the living room, essentially using it as a walker. My wife and I looked at each other and said something like, “things are about to get really interesting around here.”
Things are also about to get interesting when it comes to the women-owned small business program, and its subset, the economically disadvantaged women-owned small business program. Ever since the WOSB program formally came into being last year, I’ve been saying that it was only a matter of time before WOSBs and EDWOSBs started protesting one another’s eligibility for WOSB and EDWOSB set-aside procurements.
Now, the SBA Office of Hearings and Appeals has ruled on its first WOSB appeal. What happened? Well, for one, all WOSBs should make sure their facsimile machines are in good working order before submitting another bid.