Study: Contractors fail to use free government resources

Many businesses are missing out on important tools that could provide them with valuable information and access to the government marketplace, according to a survey conducted by the National Association of Government Contractors.

The survey, conducted earlier this year among businesses – mostly small – that are new to government contracting shows that some have won contracts and are generally satisfied with the contracting process. But others are not taking advantage or are unaware of resources such as the Federal Business Opportunities Web site and the General Services Administration schedules program.

Of the businesses surveyed, 43 percent had been registered with the Central Contractor Registry for less than a year at the time they responded. Only 38 percent had been awarded at least one federal contract, and 29 percent had received a contract from a state or local government organization.

More than half of the businesses were not registered at FedBizOpps.gov, the central source of information for contracting opportunities across the federal government. The site lists almost all procurements valued at more than $25,000. Fewer than 15 percent of the respondents are on a GSA schedule contract.

J.R. Claeys, the association’s president, said the importance of the FedBizOpps site may not be clear to many companies new to contracting.

“Something must be done to reinforce the legitimacy of this resource and modify the perception that only large businesses are able to compete for contracts," Claeys said in a prepared statement.

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