The federal government’s push to increase the number of category management procurement contracts, though good for saving money, can hurt small businesses, according to experts who spoke at the Small Business Administration’s ChallengeHER event promoting women-owned small businesses last Thursday.
“Category management is an effort by the federal government to be able to save money,” said Sean Crean, director of the SBA’s Office of Government Contracting. He explained that the government wants agencies to save money by using the contracts already developed by other agencies.
“The government is now saying, ‘Hey, we want other agencies to look at these contracts that have already been established. Why reinvent the wheel? Why go through the expense of establishing your own contract, if you can probably satisfy some of the requirements you have by going to the other, well established contracts that are out there?’” he said. “The concern that we have at SBA with category management is that it shrinks the playing field of competitors that are out there.”
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