Trying to size-up your competition in the federal contracting marketplace? Looking for a “winner” to team-up with?
Here are three relatively easy ways to do some meaningful market research on-line:
- Go to FedBizOpps (FBO) and use the “Advanced Search” feature there to look for contract opportunities and contract awards in the NAICS category that describes what you sell (look up your NAICS codes here). Set whatever date parameters you’d like (FBO will allow you to search back many years). You also might want to set some geographic limits on your search. Be sure to select both active and archived documents as well as awards. After you hit the Search button, you can then sort through the resulting list (which is compiled by most recent contracts back to the oldest). Drill down into contract awards postings to see which agencies have bought what you sell and who’s won these contracts in the past.
- Whenever you go to FedBizOpps and look at an active solicitation, you should get acquainted with using the two buttons labeled: “Add to Watchlist” and “Add Me To Interested Vendors.” The first one will ensure that you are sent updates on the solicitation. The second button will add you to a list of interested parties; it allows the contracting officer to assess potential interest in the solicitation, and when the “View Interested Vendors” module has been activated, it allows anyone to see the list of interested parties, along with all their contact information. Once you register, this is a good way to “see and be seen.”
- If the “View Interested Vendors” module in FedBizOpps has not been activated for a particular solicitation, you may wish to email the points-of-contact listed in the posting and request that they activate it so that all may see the list. Let them know that you are interested and qualified to participate and wish to pursue a partnering arrangement. If you are a small business – particularly one in a socio-economic category the government gives preference to – be sure to point that out. Contracting officers will understand that your gaining access to the list could help facilitate small business participation in the contract.
- We promised three tips, but here’s a bonus one! Each month, GTPAC posts on its web site a list of the contractors in Georgia that won federal contracts. Each list shows the name of the prime contractor, the title of the contract, the awarding agency, dollar value, and points of contact. You can find these lists at http://gtpac.org/2013/04/whos-winning-federal-contracts-in-georgia.
Be sure to attend classes conducted by the Georgia Tech Procurement Assistance Center (GTPAC) and communicate with GTPAC Procurement Counselors to learn about even more ways to conduct market research, identify opportunities, and find potential subcontracting leads.
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