The primary focus of the management of a small business is the expansion of the clientele. It is critical for the survival of the company, in the long run, to include government-based contracts into a viable business model, whether the model is based on selling products or services.

The fact that the bulk of orders received from Uncle Sam is focused on long-term commerce necessitates ensuring that a company secures such government contracts. The most important factor is the government’s trustworthiness and the diligence with which it does business. Reimbursement for the products or services given shall be made immediately and without excessive delay because the government is in control of taxpayers’ money.

What is the role of the GSA?

Following WWII, President Truman formed the GSA (the United States General Services Administration) to make doing business with the government simpler.

Multiple departments that fulfilled similar requirements were traditionally connected together to provide a unified platform for military and emergency rations purchasing and inventory management. Despite being initiated for those purposes, the mission statement has now evolved into a multi-functional organization.

The General Services Administration (GSA) is a federal agency that ensures that the government procurement process is simple and that public monies are used properly. The private sector helps the government meet its needs for consumer products and services.

The GSA acts as a middleman between government buyers and businesses that supply the necessary goods, services, or expertise. GSA is, also, known as a Multiple Awards Schedule (MAS) or a Federal Supply Schedule (FSS). The contractor has the ability to sell directly to the federal government as well as provide to municipal and state governments. 

What are the functions of the SBA?

The Small Business Administration is extensively involved in providing support for small businesses, ranging from counseling budding entrepreneurs to capital raising for small business owners. The SBA (the United States Small Business Administration) also regulates who is eligible to be classified as a small business. 

What are the market possibilities for small IT businesses while working with the GSA?

The main advantage, with regards to marketing opportunities, while working with the GSA includes the plethora of government entities that require a steady supply of goods/services. The GSA schedule aids the government departments to discover the potential of a firm by providing the necessary data. 

The requirements of the various departments in the information technology sector outweigh most of the others because of the lack of a consolidated IT resource department for the federal government as a whole. This means that the IT needs for each department are handled individually, albeit there might be certain collaborations amongst certain ones. 

This results in an increased requirement for specialized tech support. The presence of unique solutions for hardware, software, security, and service-related businesses fulfill the complete array of technological necessities for all the branches of the government.

The hardware for IT and telecommunications requirements could range from communications equipment, computing equipment, fiber optic equipment, and hardware services such as maintenance coupled with support. IT security, which consists of resilient modern cybersecurity products to defend against threats in cyberspace, is required by multiple agencies.

The marketing possibilities for the small business are numerous and the scope for vending products is limitless.

What are the contracting opportunities for small businesses?

The federal government encourages the involvement of small businesses in government contracts. This is achieved by ensuring that certain contracts can only be awarded to small businesses. 

There are more benefits for 8(a) business development businesses, women-owned businesses, Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned businesses, and HUBZone businesses. Such specific contract requirements ensure that small businesses thrive well. 

In order to qualify under one of the specialized groups, the details should be updated on the System for Award Management (SAM) and the related documents must be submitted if required.

The government also requires certain larger firms with GSA schedules to involve the participation of small businesses by allowing certain aspects of the contracts to be sub-contracted. The small businesses could market the goods/services to the larger ones and get a sub-contract awarded.

Several small businesses could club resources in order to participate in a contract, which could be deemed unfeasible by one part of the collaboration. Such joint ventures of two or more small businesses can be deemed to qualify for the contracts meant for small businesses if the documentation meets SBA requirements. 

The SBA also offers the All Small Mentor-Protégé Program to help small businesses to study the operations of existing GSA schedule holders and emulate a successful business relationship. The initial term is for three years with an opportunity to renew it for another three years. Protégé firms could have a maximum of two mentors. The mentors and protégé firms could form joint ventures as well.

Contractor Term Arrangement (CTA) is a type of deal, which brings together several firms holding GSA schedules to facilitate the process of fulfilling a large requirement of a customer. This ensures the companies could bid for schedule orders, which are beyond capabilities unless such arrangements are available. There is an increased market share and reduced risk involved. The success of the arrangement depends on the proper utilization of the strengths of the members of the CTA.


Therefore, the function of the GSA and the SBA are streamlined to increase the necessary economic growth in terms of small businesses. The opportunities for small businesses involved in the IT sector are abundant and proper marketing tools would ensure that the success of the firms involved is confirmed. The contracting opportunities for small businesses are enhanced due to the various intervening steps of the government to ensure a healthy macroeconomy of the nation.

Author Bio

Josh Ladick

Josh Ladick is the President of GSA Focus, Inc., and has been immersed in GSA Contracts and Government Contracting for over 15 years. I explain the complex GSA and FAR clauses in simple terms that anyone can understand, as well as keep government contractors informed on a broad group of GSA Contract related topics.