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FedBizOpps for government contracting and why we love and hate it at the same time

Author: Tim Hagerty / CEO - 10/1/2018

So, we all seem to have something to say about fedbizopps and like it or not it’s here to stay. For those of you coming into this new, FBO.GOV is the governments website where they post opportunities, award notices and all other sorts of data. It’s not the only governmental posting source but it’s one of the biggest for sure. If you suffer from insomnia then you can try to read the publicizing contract actions in the FAR that relate to all FBO postings here: it’s a real page turner. The bottom line is, FBO is where you go for free information about federal opportunities up for bid.

Let’s look at it from the Governments perspective. There’s a whole division within the government that helps all of the governments agencies post their opportunities on the internal part of FBO.GOV. It’s a pretty big endeavor with an average of over 35,000 active opportunities posted and updated at any given time. So, these guys have to handle every agency posting making sure they’re all current, compliant and up to date. Now this is super important since all of this information can be actionable. Let’s say someone is bidding on a job and loses it because the information they had from FBO was inaccurate, can you image that liability? Well the Government can, that’s why they take their job very seriously.

All right, enough background and fodder, let’s get to the heart of it. The general consensus among the more experienced federal contracting companies is that as soon as an opportunity hits FBO it’s already too late. The idea is, if you didn’t know about the opportunity coming up for either recompete or a new solicitation months before it was going to announced, then you would have no real time to put together a viable team, proposal, pricing package and whatever else may be needed to actually win.

There may be some meat on that bone. If you only had 10 days to read and understand a solicitation, put a team together, mount a proposal and yada yada yada, then yes it would be an uphill climb. So, in that case, I can see where you would want more time. There’s another part to this puzzle however, the government releases pre-solicitations or sources sought for a reason. They want to see what kind of response they’ll get from the private sector and if they can bring the solicitation out small business. This is an important part of the process because a lot of these publications turn into solicitations. I would think that if a company worked a sources-sought and got a good response from the customer then they would inevitably have plenty of time to gather a team and prepare their proposal for when the solicitation would come out.

Either way, there’s validity to FBO. I’ve interviewed small one-person companies all the way to some of the top 100 and they all use it. FedBizOpps is a staple of every federal contracting company’s business development tool kit and it should be.

So, love it or hate it, FBO.GOV is here to stay, at least until they want to replace it with something better but hey, where’s the incentive for that? Until then, you can always just let TeamingPro scour FBO for you so you wouldn’t have to.

Until the next,

Tim Hagerty / CEO