Once your company has worked with MT PTAC on the fundamentals required for federal contracting such as registration in SAM or other federal systems, set-aside certifications, market research, etc., you can begin searching for and responding to contracting opportunities. Your PTAC advisor can assist you with this process. The following tips from usa.gov and MT PTAC will help your company get started in the right direction.
- To find federal contracting opportunities that match the products and services your business offers, use the Contract Opportunities Search Tool on beta.SAM.gov.
- Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 15.204 describes the Uniform Contract Format which will help you understand how federal solicitations are organized.
- Read all of the documentation about the contracting opportunity very carefully. Every opportunity is different and reading all of the information is extremely important so that you fully understand the requirements.
- Make sure you’re responding to a solicitation rather than a pre-solicitation, which is a notice that an opportunity may be coming up but is not a final request for offers. If you need help understanding what certain contracting terms mean, visit the Common Federal Contracting Terms glossary.
- Ask questions–don’t guess. Before you submit your material, get your questions answered by reaching out to the agency contact person listed in the solicitation, or your MT PTAC advisor.
- Submit the requested forms and technical, past performance, and pricing information in the appropriate format by following the instructions in the solicitation. (Only the person legally authorized to enter into contracts for your business should sign forms.)
- Prepare to negotiate your best offer with the government. Make sure you know the pricing you included in your offer and have a strong understanding of the requirements listed in the solicitation.
A federal agency may reject or seek clarifications on your submission if it is incorrect, unclear, incomplete, or late. Many contract submissions are unsuccessful for these reasons. Give your business its best chance by responding to the solicitation on time and correctly the first time.