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Small Businesses Receive 22.25 Percent of Small Business Contracts in FY 2012

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Small Businesses Receive 22.25 Percent of Small Business Contracts in FY 2012

By John Shoraka, SBA Official
Published: July 2, 2013 Updated: July 24, 2013

In FY 2012, the federal government made real progress toward delivering 23 percent of eligible federal contracting dollars to small businesses, with 22.25 percent going to small businesses compared to 21.65 percent in FY 2011.  We also made significant impact in several key areas of small business contracting, including exceeding the goal for service disabled veterans for the first time and delivering the highest percentage of contracts to small disadvantaged businesses to date.  In addition, more agencies than ever before reached or surpassed all of their prime contracting goals.   

As a result of a government wide focus on increasing small business contracting opportunities, during the first term of the Obama administration, $376.2 billion in contracting dollars went to small businesses.  This is a $48.1 billion increase over the four preceding years even as we have reduced contracting spending overall.

Federal contracting with small businesses remains a win-win.  Small businesses get the revenue they need to grow their revenues and create jobs.  Meanwhile, the federal government gets the chance to work with some of the most responsive, innovative and nimble companies in the U.S. —often with a direct line to their CEO. 

SBA is required to report to the President and Congress on achievements by federal agencies and departments against their annual procurement goals to ensure greater accountability.  The Small Business Procurement Scorecard provides an assessment of federal achievement in prime contracting and subcontracting to small businesses by the 24 Chief Financial Officers Act agencies.  It also measures progress that departments are making to ensure small business opportunities remain an integral part of their acquisition of goods and services to meet mission objectives.  The FY 2012 Small Business Procurement Scorecard is now available on  

The SBA continues to focus on a number of initiatives to help the government meet the 23 percent goal, ensure the accuracy of data, and prevent fraud, waste and abuse, including: 

  • Significantly improving the quality of small business procurement data;
  • Collaborating with White House and Administration Senior Officials to help ensure top-level leadership commitment from across the federal government to utilize small businesses;
  • Training prospective and existing small businesses to acquire the confidence and skills needed to successfully  compete for and win federal contracts through GC Classroom;
  • Strengthening, building capacity and increasing opportunities in America's supply chains for small businesses through the American Supplier Initiative (ASI); and
  • Conducting outreach and matchmaking events across the country to ensure that small businesses everywhere have direct access to federal buyers. 

In particular, SBA recently launched a strategic HUBZone and 8(a) Business Development Program Recruitment Initiative to recruit new firms into both programs that better meet the needs of the federal procurement marketplace.  SBA also recently joined with Women Impacting Public Policy (WIPP) and American Express OPEN to launch the ChallengeHER initiative, to inform Woman-Owned Small Businesses about the opportunities available within the federal supply chain.

Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. SBA and the Obama Administration will continue to provide small business owners the necessary tools to ensure they have the wind at their back, enabling them to grow and create jobs.

For more information about the Small Business Procurement Scorecard, visit

About the Author:

John Shoraka
John Shoraka

SBA Official

John Shoraka is the Associate Administrator for Government Contracting and Business Development at the U.S. Small Business Administration.


thanks for useful information. unfortunately in Georgia, micro and small business is not exist.
Here's what's amazing to me. We're touting this as a good thing, that "we're almost there", but still have not made the 23% goal for 7 years straight! Change the 23% to a shall statement - make it a requirement and not a GOAL. Do I know 23% can be done? Sure! Just look at a recent Washington Post article. Here's an excerpt: ========================= President Obama in 2009 told federal agencies that no-bid contracts were “wasteful’’ and “inefficient.’’ Four years later, his administration spent more money on non-competitive contracts than ever before. Federal agencies awarded $115.2 billion in no-bid contracts in fiscal year 2012, an 8.9 increase from $105.8 billion from 2009, according to government data. The jump unfolded even as total contract spending decreased by about 5 percent. Lockheed Martin, Boeing and Raytheon were top recipients of sole-source contracts. ======================== So basically, what that is saying is that the Government sole sourced 23% to large businesses, yet still can't hit the small business target. Why? PS - keep in mind that the 23% "goal" does not include money spent by the US Government on black projects, that budget isn't part of the equation. And here's what we learned recently on that from an article in the Washington Post August 29th: =========================== The $52.6 billion “black budget” for fiscal 2013, obtained by The Washington Post from former ­intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, maps a bureaucratic and operational landscape that has never been subject to public scrutiny. Although the government has annually released its overall level of intelligence spending since 2007, it has not divulged how it uses the money or how it performs against the goals set by the president and Congress.
Thank you for writing the article as the statistics are encouraging, equally however, they are particularly frustrating to read. When I see “SBA recently launched a strategic HUBZone and 8(a) Business Development Program Recruitment Initiative to recruit new firms into both programs”, I’m left wondering how and what criteria are being used to find small businesses to provide assistance. This coming from a small business that applied and has effectively been shut out of the SBA8a program for two consecutive years, and based on a revenue percentage technicality is facing an additional three years of waiting before reapplying in 2016. The frustration is driven home even further as you read about the $320 plus million in fraud picked up by the GAO showing information about how people sought out ways to take advantage of the resources in a dishonest way. Conversely there are business owners who are genuinely looking for guidance, seeking to gain access to the business development resources to grow professionally, and maybe create some jobs – they are turned away for reasons just mentioned. There is no equity to be found in situations like these. So yes, the article is encouraging and in many ways provides the motivation to look at alternatives for gaining access to the federal market place, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t speak up and tell the other side of the story as someone in the trenches trying to engage the SBA for help. Like most business owners, we just keep pushing forward and whether it’s 2016 or even farther away; we will make it happen one day.

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