Women-Owned Small Businesses


WOSB Program News - updated 4/25/2016


Women-Owned Small Businesses (WOSB) Federal Contracting Program

The WOSB Federal Contract Program was implemented in February 2011 with the goal of expanding the number of industries where WOSB were able to compete for business with the federal government.  This program enables Economically Disadvantaged WOSBs (EDWOSBs) to compete for federal contracts that are set-aside for EDWOSBs in industries where women-owned small businesses are underrepresented.   It also allows set-asides for WOSBs in industries where women-owned small businesses are substantially underrepresented.  SBA has designated two sets of industries according to North American Industry Classification System (NAICS). The link below will take you to the current list of NAICS codes designated for use under this program.

What you need to know if you are a Contracting Officer

What you need to know if you are a WOSB

NEW!! WOSB Portal! Certify.SBA.GOV

The WOSB Repository has moved from the General Login System (GLS) to the new SBA One Contracting Portal at certify.sba.gov.  SBA has posted PowerPoint presentations to assist you with the WOSB/EDWOSB self-certification process. In this new portal, WOSB business owners will be able to manage their documents, complete application forms online, and receive notices of upcoming deadlines. Note, as self-certification is still permitted while SBA develops new criteria, this modernized site provides a platform for businesses to self-certify as a WOSB or EDWOSB.  For technical questions email certify@sba.gov

WOSB Program Program Overview

Certify.sba.gov Walkthrough

Notice of GLS Outage:

The existing WOSB Program Repository in GLS is no longer available. Beginning Thursday, March 24, 2016, all WOSB Program requirements are managed through certify.SBA.gov.  All WOSB Program participants including existing GLS users are required to create a new user account to manage their WOSB or EDWOSB profiles and supporting documentation for self or third party certifications. After creating a new user account, businesses are required to update their records by answering the questionnaire online.  The questionnaire has replaced SBA Form 2413, WOMEN OWNED SMALL BUSINESS (WOSB) PROGRAM CERTIFICATION – WOSBs; SBA Form 2414, WOMEN OWNED SMALL BUSINESS (WOSB) PROGRAM CERTIFICATION – ECONOMICALLY DISADVANTAGED (EDWOSB), and SBA Form 413, Personal Financial Statement - Women Owned Small Business (WOSB) Program. Once you complete the questionnaire, you will receive a letter confirming that SBA has received the online forms. 

Notice for Federal Contracting Officers: 

Due to the system upgrade, access to the WOSB Program Repository is temporarily unavailable for contracting officers (CO), starting on Wednesday, March 23 at 1:00 EDT.  During this time, in order to comply with the WOSB Program requirements at 13 CFR 127.301 and FAR 19.1505(e) (specifying that a CO shall verify that an apparent successful offeror has provided all the required documents set forth in 127.300(e) to the WOSB Program Repository), SBA reviews the Repository on behalf of a CO. A CO may request that SBA review the Repository on their behalf by sending an email to wosb@sba.gov with the following in the subject line:


In the body of the email, the CO should do the following:

  • Provide the apparent successful offeror’s DUNS, EIN, FIRM NAME, and OWNER NAME;
  • Indicate whether the pending award is under a WOSB or EDWOSB set-aside or sole source procurement;
  • Specify the NAICS code assigned to the procurement; and
  • Identify the State where the CO is located.

SBA will perform the necessary check to determine whether the apparent successful offeror has filed all the required eligibility documents and provide the CO with an email response which either: (a) notifies the CO that all required documents have been provided or (b) identifies which documents are missing in order to allow the CO to file a status protest in accordance with SBA regulations and the FAR.

SBA will process WOSB/EDWOSB verification requests only from contracting officers.

New!! Results of Department of Commerce WOSB Federal Contract Program Study

WOSB Program Changes

At the request of the SBA in 2015, the Office of the Chief Economist, at the U.S. Department of Commerce, conducted a new study on the Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) Federal Contracting Program.  The study reevaluated the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) industry groups in which WOSBs are underrepresented and substantially underrepresented in Federal contracting.  As a result of the study, the SBA has determined changes will be implemented to the WOSB Federal Contracting Program. These changes will provide expanded opportunities for WOSBs to pursue set-aside and sole source federal contracts. 

As set forth in the Federal Register notice, the SBA has authorized the use of 113 new NAICS Industry groups for WOSB and EDWOSB set asides.  WOSBs will now be eligible for contract participation in 92 NAICS industry groups.  EDWOSBs will now be eligible for contract participation in 21 designated NAICS industry groups, along with the 92 NAICS industry groups identified for WOSB. The effective date per the notice for use of these new NAICS is 3 March 2016. Read the Federal Register Notice.

SBA has published its full analysis of the DOC study in the related Federal Register notice that discusses which NAICS codes are no longer designated for use under the WOSB program, as well which NAICS codes are being newly designated for use under the program.

Read the DOC WOSB Federal Contract Program report.

See the full lists of the 2016 6-digit NAICS codes designated for EDWOSB and for WOSB set-asides under the WOSB Program effective as set forth in the Federal Register Notice.