The following post is courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap:
From: Lorraine Russo
At any given time, the Federal Business Opportunities website has tens of thousands of Requests for Proposals (RFPs) that allow vendors to bid on the opportunity to provide goods and services. By law, the government is required to conduct an open and competitive bidding process for any purchases meeting certain criteria. (The federal regulations for government contracts are known as the FAR: Federal Acquisition Regulations.)
A provider that has registered at fbo.gov can bid on any opportunity. Also, subcontractors (which include small and minority-owned businesses), can add themselves as an Interested Vendor for any posted opportunity. Go to any new opportunity and you’ll see the Interested Vendors List tab. Click here for an example.
NOTE – it will take some time to become familiar with this site. Learning how to search among the plethora of Federal agencies and their respective opportunities takes practice. For now, start with keyword searches, such as accounting, audit, etc. From there, you’ll learn how to refine your searches to yield better results.
The Interested Vendors may not necessarily be bidding. Rather, they hope to subcontract with the winning vendor. Many of these small businesses are small shops that, otherwise, you may never hear about. No matter their size or level of fame, they do team up with some of the world’s largest companies for government work. In some cases, these could be small or minority-owned businesses to which a winning vendor will sub out a percentage of the win in order to comply with the government’s set-aside requirements.
In fact, when responding to an RFP, the bidding vendors are typically required to state what percentage of an award will be given to their small business partners. Their proposals must include the subcontractor's company description, expertise, and other pertinent information that helps to qualify the business as a viable business partner.
For all you sales and marketing writers, there may opportunities for you to help these small companies better describe themselves. Chances are, they are staffed for technical work, not writing and marketing.
As you look through the Interested Vendor lists, you’ll see that many have contact information, including web site, telephone, etc. These are the small business that may be hiring--but not advertising!
Be sure to visit each of these sites for employment opportunities. Take note of the opportunities at the FBO website for which they are listed as an Interested Vendor. Conduct as much research as you can on each company. Because they are small and, most likely, privately-owned, there may not be much information to be found.
Then, based on your research, prepare your elevator pitch and see if there is an opportunity for you to help them grow! Going forward: by registering at fbo.gov, you can set up email alerts so that you are notified when new opportunities are posted. Good luck!!
Article courtesy of the Recruiting Blogswap, a content exchange service sponsored by CollegeRecruiter.com, a leading site for college students looking for internships and recent graduates searching for entry level jobs and other career opportunities.