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SBA Nebraska’s Federal Contracting Year In Review

Nebraska small businesses used multiple SBA contracting assistance programs to increase the overall amount of federal dollars and contracts awarded in Nebraska
Release Date: 
Monday, December 7, 2020
Release Number: 
20-05
Advisory Date: 
Monday, December 7, 2020
Advisory Number: 
20-05
Contact: 
Elizabeth Yearwood

Omaha, NE – FY2020 was a busy year for Nebraska companies involved in Federal Contracting. “Despite the pandemic, Nebraska contractors were very active in federal contracting. Contracts awarded to Nebraska small businesses, in terms of dollars, remained steady from FY2019 to FY2020; however, small businesses equated to just over 60% of all dollars awarded to Nebraska businesses.  This success in Nebraska far exceeds the Federal government’s goal of 23% of all federal contract dollars being awarded to small businesses. “We are proud of the hard work and resilience of Nebraska small businesses to persevere in these hard times to bid, win and execute successfully on federal contracts,” says Lisa Tedesco, Deputy Director of the SBA Nebraska District Office.

In FY2020, Nebraska businesses were awarded the following in total contract dollars by socio-economic category:

Total $

$1.18B

Small Business

$724.5M

8(a) certified

$224.9M

HUBZone certified

$167.7M

Veteran-Owned Small Business

$251.1M

Woman-Owned Small Business

$134.9M

Source: FEDMINE.US

Competing as a small business in the federal government can be a daunting task, so the SBA has developed contracting assistance programs to help ensure that small businesses win at least 23% of all federal contracting dollars each year. Under these programs, small businesses can:

  • Win a fair share of federal contracts
  • Qualify for exclusive set-aside and sole source contracts
  • Partner with established contractors to win contracts
  • Get business mentoring and education on how federal contracting works

The SBA has 5 contracting programs that help small businesses be competitive in the federal market. Each program allows only specific businesses to compete for contracts set aside for these programs. More information on each program can be found on SBA’s website.

Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) program: The Federal Government’s goal is to award at least 5% of all contracting dollars to Women-Owned Small Businesses (WOSBs) and Economically Disadvantaged Women-Owned Small Businesses (EDWOSBs). To qualify as a WOSB, the business must be small and be at least 51% owned and controlled by women. To qualify as an EDWOSB the women owners must meet net worth and income requirements.  The certification process for this program has changed. Information on the updated process can be found here.

Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) program:  The Federal Government aims to award at least 3% of all federal contracting dollars for those individuals certified in the SDVOSB program. To qualify, the business must be small, at least 51% owned and controlled by a service-disabled veteran, and that veteran must have a service-connected disability. More information on that program can be found here. Veteran business owners should also look into the Department of Veterans Affairs Veterans First Contracting Program as the VA also awards a large number of contracts to veterans. This program requires a separate verification process outside of the SBA.

8(a) Business Development program: At least 5% of all federal contracting dollars should be awarded through the 8(a) program per the Federal Government contracting goals. This program is specifically for socially and economically disadvantaged business owners who meet personal net worth, assets and net income requirements and are at least 51% owned by an individual(s) who is economically and socially disadvantaged. More information on this program can be found here.

HUBZone program: The Federal Government tries to award at least 3% of all federal contracting dollars to Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZones). To obtain a HUBZone certification, a business must be small, have its principal office located in a HUBZone, and have at least 35% of its employees living in a HUBZone.  There are multiple HUBZones in Nebraska. There have been numerous changes to this program over the past year to streamline the application process, provide faster certification decisions and to expand early-engagement. More information can be found here.

All Small Mentor-Protégé program: This mentorship program is designed to help small businesses learn from an experienced government contractor. Small business protégés can get business development assistance, education, financial assistance, guidance on internal business management systems and more through this formal relationship with a business mentor. This program also allows businesses to take advantage of the other contracting programs through Joint Venture agreements. More information on this program can be found here.

Navigating the complex world of contracting can be a challenge for small business owners.  The U.S. Small Business Administration partners with the Nebraska Business Development Center’s Procurement Technical Assistance Center (NBDC PTAC) to provide free assistance to business owners interested in pursuing city, state and federal contracts. PTAC counselors are located throughout Nebraska and can help business owners understand the contracting process, obtain certifications, access resources such as Bidmatch to automatically search contracting opportunities, write capability statements, prepare to bid for contracts and much more. For information about free PTAC contracting services please call 402-554-6232.

Not even the COVID-19 pandemic could dampen Nebraska’s entrepreneurial spirit. FY20 also saw record lending in addition to a successful contracting year. For information on the SBA’s programs, resource partners or services, please contact the Nebraska District Office at 402-221-4691.

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About the U.S. Small Business Administration

The U.S. Small Business Administration makes the American dream of business ownership a reality. As the only go-to resource and voice for small businesses backed by the strength of the federal government, the SBA empowers entrepreneurs and small business owners with the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their businesses, or recover from a declared disaster. It delivers services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more visit www.sba.gov.