If you are interested in securing federal government contracts these tips will help you make the most of the opportunity. What you will need to do is determine what your business is going to specialize in and once you have determined your speciality there are websites like fbo.gov which will provide you with access to all of the open contracts being offered by the federal government.
All of these contracts are open to competition however preference can be given to companies that are owned by veterans or visible minorities. If you are a veteran, woman or member of a visible minority then you will need to apply for special designation, this designation will give you a distinct advantage when competing with other businesses.
While reviewing the various contracts being offered you could qualify as either the primary or a sub-contractor. Even if you are able to meet the requirements outlined in the tender you will need to install a DCAA (Defense Contractor Audit Authority) certified accounting system. This accounting system will need to keep track of all the hours worked on a particular task.
While documenting the time being worked it is also necessary to track the cost of materials. There are services like Deltek that charges over $25,000 just to implement their software which is very expensive. What the majority of firms do is use cloud based accounting service like ERP Gov Cloud which is DCAA compliant.
After you have submitted your proposal and have received a preliminary approval there will be an auditor who will visit your place of business. During this audit the auditor is going to review your accounting system and also make sure you understand the billing procedures. If you fail the audit you could lose the contract so you really need to do your homework to reduce the risks of failing the review.
There are some individuals who think you have to hire a CPA or have a substantial amount of money to do work for the government but that is not true. A significant portion of contractors have less than 10 employees and less than $100,000 per year revenue so if you are serious about making money working for the federal government then you should seriously think about working with them. One of the drawbacks is meeting all of the compliance requirements but you will have peace of mind knowing your invoices will be paid, at the very least you should review the opportunities so you know what options are available to you.