8(a) Certifications

Thinking about the many ways an 8(a) Certification could help you close new business? FWDthink’s Small Business Certification division can help.

First things first: ARE YOU QUALIFIED? The Small Business Administration details everything you need to know about qualification on their website: https://www.sba.gov/federal-contracting/contracting-assistance-programs/8a-business-development-program

There are the technical qualifications of the 8(a) Program:

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You are a small business

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You have never participated in the 8(a) program

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Your business is at least 51 percent owned and controlled by U.S. citizens who are economically and socially disadvantaged

Your business is owned by someone whose personal net worth is $250,000 or less

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Your business is owned by someone whose average adjusted gross income for three years is $250,000 or less

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Your business is owned by someone with $4 million or less in assets

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The business owner manages day-to-day operations and also makes long-term decisions

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All business principals can demonstrate good character. Browse the Code of Federal Regulations specific to 8(a) for more information.

You can show potential for success and the ability to perform successfully on contracts

And then there are the practical qualifications—are you actually ready to take the advantage the 8(a) program can offer you? Consider these questions:

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How much current federal work do you have?

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Do you have current federal customers telling you if you had your 8(a) they could direct awards to you?

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Have you identified which customers are buying what you are selling, more importantly which of those have money and most importantly how they are purchasing?

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What is the buying preference of your target customer base? Is it the 8(a) program?

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Are you positioned, right now, to take advantage of the 8(a) program to the fullest extent?

We’re adamant about posing these questions because we’ve seen too many instances where companies falsely believe being 8(a) certified will “open the floodgates” and customers will start placing orders non-stop. THIS IS A MYTH! The 8(a) program has many benefits and it will make it easier for customers to buy from you, but you need to know who your customers are and be able to make a sale.

If you can answer the above questions, truthfully, in the affirmative, then we encourage you to request a consultation and submit an intake form. If not, we can help you move towards 8(a) readiness in other ways: invest in your future with a strategic plan, and we’ll find the answers you need.

Our strategic plans offer insight into various factors, including:

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Who is buying what you are selling

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More importantly, do they have money

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Most importantly, how are they buying

For our clients, having this data is crucial. They aren’t looking at forecasts to determine #1 and then guessing about #2 and #3. We provide historical data and a trend analysis to assess what has happened in the past and then look forward to see where the market is going. Having this information allows you to make business development, marketing and capture decisions based on facts. It also affords you the luxury of determining which contract vehicles to pursue instead of spending enormous amounts of time and capital on contract vehicles that aren’t strategically aligned to what you’re selling.

Because we know that having a strategic plan based on data is the foundation to success, we only provide 8(a) consulting services as a bundle with our strategic plans. 8(a) consulting is included for a nominal fee—what you’re really paying for is the unique, highly individualized strategic plan we’ll handcraft and present from sourced data specific to your 8(a) status and your offerings. This is the most successful way we’ve found to help our pre-qualified clients achieve long term success. In addition, you’ll receive a list of expiring and upcoming 8(a) opportunities at the target agencies we’ve identified that buy what you’re selling, have money and use prefer to use the 8(a) contract.

Our Process

Free consultation. Is your company eligible for 8(a) Certification? Let’s check.

Fill out a short intake form and schedule a short conversation with our 8(a) expert to talk about what the process of applying for an 8(a) might look like for you. Our 8(a) Strategic Plan with application bundle starts at $10,000.00

Complete 8(a) Certification Service

Collaboration

Your information, our expertise. Work closely with FWDthink’s 8(a) consultants to ensure your application is properly completed. We’ll prepare for any potential stumbling blocks before they become a problem and address any areas of weakness so you can submit the strongest possible application. Then we get into the good stuff, creating a strategic plan based on your unique offering and the trends of the market.

Expertise

Get fast answers to complicated questions. Whether you have an established minority owned business that easily meets all 8(a) requirements or are a new company with multiple minority and non-minority owners, FWDthink’s consultants will smooth the path forward.

Production

Use your time wisely. FWDthink prepares all materials possible for you, enabling you to keep your focus on day-to-day operations while we facilitate your application.

Review

We’ll review all financial statements, business documents and narratives to put the strongest possible package together.

Market Research

Find your path into new opportunities by taking a close look at the current waters. Our 8(a) service comes with a market evaluation designed to give you a leg up on closing real business using your 8(a). We’ll evaluate past market trends, provide a few current open opportunities, and even offer some future projections, all in an easy to understand graphical format.

Your success after award is critical to the process: our 8(a) application service isn’t available without the included market research.