Running a successful business requires skills, savvy, and, sometimes, all the help you can get. Registering and bidding on government contracts is one way many small businesses increase sales and brand visibility. Another way to build your company is by taking advantage of the various government certifications set aside to assist specific types of businesses.

Women-owned businesses, for example, are eligible for certain contracting opportunities. Another certification that can help strengthen your business’s chances of obtaining valuable contracts is the Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) certification.

What is Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) Certification?

The federal government is obliged to provide assistance to mitigate the various economic losses and disadvantages faced by many veterans upon their return home. One of the ways they do this is through SDVOSB certification. This certification makes your company eligible to receive certain contract benefits from the federal government. In 1999, the government set a goal that not less than 3 percent of its prime contract and subcontract awards would go to businesses owned by service-disabled veterans.

Which Businesses are Eligible?

In order to be eligible for SDVOSB certification, at least 51 percent of a business must be owned by one or more service-disabled veterans. This refers to anyone who incurred a disability while performing their duties in the active military, naval, or air service and was released or discharged from duty under conditions other than dishonorable. There is no specific range of disability required to be eligible for this certification.

The veteran/owner must also exhibit direct control of the business. This means that they need to have a hand in long-term decision-making, as well as the day-to-day leadership of the business. If your business fits these specifications, you can register for an SDVOSB certification.

Registering for SDVOSB Certification

To get your registration started, you’ll need proof that you are a veteran. This requires a Department of Defense Form 214, also known as a DD 214. This is the form issued by the government when a service member retires or is discharged from active duty. You will also need a letter from the U.S. Department of Veteran affairs verifying your disability status.

Things to Know About Applying for Government Contracts

Before initiating the process of registering for an SDVOSB certification, make sure you’re prepared to commit to working to win government contracts. The process isn’t as simple as applying and waiting for contracts to come your way. Businesses are often surprised to find that they need to develop a brand-new marketing strategy devoted to scoring military contracts. They also often discover that they’re ill-prepared to navigate price and terms negotiations with government agencies.

It isn’t all bad news, however. Government contracts can mean big dollars for small businesses. Whether you own an automotive company and are hoping to win a GSA Schedule 23 V or started a food service company and want to apply for a GSA Schedule 73, these types of contracts can be the key to expanding your business.

Thankfully, working with a government contract consulting firm can help ease a lot of the pressures and make the process less confusing and time-consuming for business owners. With years of experience in helping clients register as government contractors, and negotiate through the government lingo, rules, and regulations to firm up lucrative deals, Government Contract Services is here to help.

From applying for your SDVOSB certification to helping you obtain your first government contract, we can help answer your questions and walk you through the confusing and time-consuming process — giving you more time to focus on running your business. To get started, contact us today.

Cristi helps you understand the government market place. She specializes in assisting our marketing, advertising and staffing clients achieve government sales success. Her advanced knowledge of training and human-resource related functions as well as her Bachelor’s in Marketing gives her the ability to manage your important business partnerships.