Selling to the World’s Largest Customer


Lt Col Ricky Howard

This 7 days we’re exploring a special prospect to turn the world’s premier purchaser of items and expert services into a purchaser of yours.

Which is appropriate, we’re chatting about selling to the government.

There is very little like owning a client that can practically print the money!

But there is a good deal of confusion and misunderstandings all over getting federal government contracts so I’ve enlisted some pro assistance to help us learn how to do it the proper way.

Retired Lt Col Ricky Howard of expended many years on the purchasing facet for the U.S. Office of Protection and now allows modest organizations like yours get their foot in the door.

Tune in to The Facet Hustle Display interview to listen to:

  • why there are so quite a few rewarding options with government contracts
  • Ricky’s tips and greatest procedures for winning contracts
  • how you can also gain contracts performing as matchmaker or partnering with other small business entrepreneurs

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The Chances in Governing administration Contracting

“It’s an astounding possibility that most smaller enterprises don’t know about or really don’t check out. Or, if they do test they are genuinely not sure wherever to begin,” Ricky explained.

The govt is the solitary most important purchaser of merchandise and companies in the entire world, Ricky stated.

In addition, Ricky reported that the authorities is mandated by legislation to buy from smaller enterprises — at minimum 23% of their paying.

To give you an notion of what that seems like in dollars, Ricky mentioned that the governing administration invested around $154 billion just on smaller company contracts past yr by itself.

And it’s not just for major equipment and protection materials. There is a big volume of likely for modest organizations of all sorts to get a slice of the pie.

Just about anything that goes into the infrastructure of a town the place armed forces staff are based needs to be sourced.

From recreational routines to developing and keeping business structures, the scope is incredibly extensive.

Ricky also said it’s a excellent time to pitch contracts to the governing administration ideal now. Less than 1% of tiny corporations are actively advertising to the government, and that variety has been reducing in latest several years.

Finding Out if the Govt Is Obtaining What You’re Providing

“In the community sector, all the facts is public,” Ricky reported.

Ricky mentioned it couldn’t be easier to discover out who’s doing the paying out and what is being bought than when it arrives to the government.

If you want to discover out if the authorities is obtaining what you are marketing, Ricky suggests finding began by viewing


To use the look for aspect on USASpending to find out if there is a need for your solutions, Ricky gave the subsequent suggestions as an illustration:

  • Go to “Award Search” and pull down the menu, then find “Advanced Search”
  • Select a array masking the final 3 many years for the most applicable info. That’ll be “FY 2023,” “FY 2022,” and “FY 2021”
  • Type your niche or provider into the “North American Sector Classification Program (NAICS)” box to discover out what your government code is. For instance, if your kind “Painting” into the NAICS box it’ll present you the code for painting is “238320”
  • You can now lookup for contracts awarded to tiny firms presenting portray providers. Ricky done this search and could see close to $253 million was put in on portray over the previous a few yrs, and the DoD was dependable for close to $175 million of that.

This is just a fast instance, there is a ton a lot more you can do with the superior look for filters readily available.

If you shell out some time digging into the information you are going to be ready to see the styles of contracts on a extra granular degree.

Registering to Offer to the Government

After you have discovered that the authorities is awarding contracts to corporations comparable to yours, the upcoming phase is to go to

This is where the government repository of all federal contracting data is saved.

You can glimpse up solicitation information and facts on distinct contracts, as nicely as sign up your small business to promote to the authorities.

Ricky said the method of registering your enterprise is self-explanatory, but assume it to consider a week or two for all the approvals to go via.

Enjoying Matchmaker or Getting a Subcontractor

If you really do not have a company or offer you a assistance on your own, you could act as a middleman or matchmaker.

This is named becoming a government agreement “integrator.” Ricky explained currently being an integrator is a popular organization model that performs well.

You could also be a subcontractor and do the job with a greater primary contractor. This enables you to put in a joint bid on a venture and perform with one more small business.

This is a very good way to be awarded contracts that have been established aside for specific enterprise varieties of demographics that only a single of you can bid on.

There are some principles all around how substantially get the job done the key contractor has to do on a undertaking, but it’s another model that performs effectively.

Bidding Approach

Ricky described that if you dive in and start out creating proposals and bidding on contracts, your odds of successful are going to be quite reduced.

To enhance your odds, Ricky advises that as a substitute of filtering for requests for offers on jobs, you filter on “requests for information” or “sources sought.”

These requests are the authorities attempting to figure out how to remedy a issue before placing a solicitation with each other.

To create a request for information, you will need to have to set with each other a number of webpages of data answering queries, and recommending methods as for every the proposal.

The benefit of carrying out this is that you’re making get in touch with ahead of the solicitation has occur out.

You are placing your corporation title out there as anyone that can do the perform and explaining why you’re great for the agreement when it is produced.

You’ll usually have the option to ask for a assembly in person when filling out a request for information. This is something Ricky suggests carrying out as a way of introducing your enterprise.

Bidding Most effective Techniques and Recommendations

When you see a solicitation that you want to put in a bid for, some ideas Ricky shared are:

  • Really do not incorporate just about anything that is not requested for in the proposal, it’ll only work against you. Your bid is heading to be scored primarily based on how very well you followed the guidelines.
  • Glance at similar contracts that have presently been awarded to get an strategy of how much to bid. You can use to see for how much Typical Services Administration (GSA) contracts are getting awarded.
  • Do not be shy to reply and ask what the spending plan seems to be like. Ricky reported most agencies will be eager to explain to you what their finances is and that’ll help give you a ballpark figure.

If you’re struggling to put with each other your initially proposal, Ricky claimed you can discover anyone on Upwork with expertise writing proposals.

Viewing how a proposal is prepared up by someone with working experience and a observe record of winning bids is heading to be a huge aid.

Examples of Consumers Successful Contracts

Ricky shared a couple of examples of his clientele who have gained govt contracts not long ago.

A single was a woman who moves furniture for a living. She received a couple of contracts at $16k/ea relocating business furnishings.

One more was a female who ran a helpdesk support. From reaching out to the workplaces and working with requests for data, Ricky was ready to see that the govt was transitioning from its legacy helpdesk method to a new procedure that aided people with disabilities.

His consumer was able to tap into that need to have to move from just one specific type of helpdesk process to another. For the previous two decades, she has billed about $1 million a yr.

What’s Up coming?

“I’m energized about raising the number of smaller corporations offering to the government,” Ricky instructed me.

Ricky has not too long ago put together a certification plan as section of his academy that requires pupils by way of the measures of successful govt contracts.

If you want to understand more and enroll in Ricky’s education program, he’s designed a coupon code for Side Hustle exhibit listeners that’ll give you 1-month free.

Head over to and kind “THESIDEHUSTLESHOW” in the coupon box to declare your absolutely free thirty day period.

Ricky’s #1 Tip for Facet Hustle Country

It is a marathon, not a dash.”

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