Government Procurement: Getting Started with Government Procurement

If your business is planning to engage in government or public procurement, you might be excited to start the process. It is very reasonable to be since winning government procurement contracts/projects can be hard and come with many benefits in many areas, including long and short term goals.

In any endeavor, it takes time and effort to prepare. For many novice businesses in government procurement, excitement can come before anything else. However, there should be some points to consider (or questions to ask) before jumping to the fray.

1. What is my product or service?

A product or service is the foundation of any business. Without it, a business doesn’t exist or even won’t last. Your product or service is what you are offering to a market that will consume or use it. Sometimes, the market or the customer base decides what they need and will buy if it is offered. Likewise, a business like yours can create a need that the market will buy. Either way, customers place a high regard on a business that knows their product or service. Any business that can’t define what they are offering is a red flag for customers. Before going to any procurement market or project, know the strengths and weaknesses of your product or service. You will be competing with other businesses in the same industry and standing out above the rest is a must.

2. Who is my customer/client?

This is a basic question when starting a business. In government procurement, it is the government that assumes the role of client or buyer. ‘Government’ is a generic label – your business can deal with a local, state or federal government. Each level of government has its own stringent rules and regulation that must be followed before any offer is considered. The higher the government level is the higher profit that your business can get. The higher pay scale can also come with stricter obligations. If you are new into procurement, try local first, take your time with the process and then, take a chance with a higher level.

3. What does my client/customer need?

The government, in general, has many needs. As the government serves the interests of all members of society, it needs businesses to help provide those needs. Since the government is further represented into smaller bodies that attend to specific concerns, your business should be better acquainted with a specific government agency or department that might need your product/services.

4. How can reach my client or customer?

Contacting the government agency or department is crucial. You can establish contact by inquiring via the agency’s email address or you can personally visit a government agency’s procurement office. Engage with people who work at the office. Face-to-face contact, supported by calls, is a good strategy to cement a good foundation for the relationship.

These are very basic questions/concerns that will create a big impact in starting your procurement journey.

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