This information is a resource for California Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) firms and small business (SB) firms certified by the Department of General Services (DGS). It is also an introduction to doing business with California state government for prospective small business owners.
1. You can learn about DGS Office of Business and Acquisition Services’ (OBAS) upcoming solicitations and the DGS Procurement Division’s (PD) upcoming solicitations by accessing the PD Quick Links section on the Cal eProcure page to review the OBAS Upcoming Solicitations and the PD Upcoming Solicitations. Upcoming solicitation notices are posted monthly. OBAS conducts purchases on behalf of DGS and PD conducts purchases on behalf of other state agencies when purchases will exceed agencies’ purchasing authority.
2. Use the Cal eProcure Vendor Training to help you navigate Cal eProcure using interactive learning tools which provide simulated system transactions and guided instruction. The Cal eProcure Contact Us link contains contacts for Cal eProcure registration and system issues, SB/DVBE program inquires and state procurement related inquires.
3. Explore Business Development to determine if the state has procured the goods and services that you provide using the State Contract and Procurement Registration System (SCPRS) Pivot Tables tab. This information allows you to search yearly award records from fiscal years 2008-09 through 2015-16:
a. SCPRS identifies purchases between $5,000.01 and $249.999.99 for goods and services and up to $291,000.00 for public works. Many of these purchases were conducted using the SB/DVBE Option. The SB/DVBE Option is an informal bid process where state buyers are only required to obtain quotes from two small businesses or two disabled veteran business enterprises. The SB/DVBE Option is exempt from advertisement. Respond to the SB/DVBE Option – informal request for bids: Step 2 of the How to do Business brochure.
b. Use the FI$Cal SCPRS Search tool and How to Conduct a SCPRS Data Search instructions to identify awards beyond 2015-16.
c. You can contact SB/DVBE Advocates by using the list found on the Business Development home page under the California Business Resources tab.
i. Email your business’ one-page capability statement to the departments you are interested in doing business with.
d. Be familiar with the Department of Industrial Relations public works (construction) requirements.
4. Know your competition. View the certification profiles of your competitors using the Small Business & Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise tab on Cal eProcure. Use the Search for SB/DVBE Firms link located under the first heading Sell to the State.
5. California certified businesses can participate in state contracting in three ways. Search these opportunities using the Get Public Procurement Information link located under the third heading Get Public Procurement Information on the Cal eProcure home page:
a. DGS Leveraged Procurement Agreements (LPAs): Allows departments and local governments to buy directly from suppliers through existing contracts and agreements:
i. If your firm is a federal General Services Administration provider, use Step 4 of the How to do Business with State Government and become a California Multiple Award Schedules (CMAS) provider
ii. IT Consulting Services
iii. Software Licensing Program
b. Respond to bids posted by state departments on the California State Contracts Register (CSCR)
c. SB/DVBE Option. Refer to the How to do Business document.
6. Explore the state’s Reciprocity Program to learn about its SB and DVBE reciprocity partners. This program builds partnerships with cities, counties and special districts throughout California that agree to use SB and/or DVBE certification in addition to specific SB and DVBE contracting requirements.
7. State departments are required to pay California certified small businesses within 45 calendar days after receiving an undisputed invoice to avoid late payment penalties. Review the Prompt Payment Program for more information.
8. Visit the Dispute Resolution Unit home page under the Target Area Contract Preference Act (TACPA) tab to determine if your business is located within a TACPA qualified zone before bidding.
Collaboration Award for Contracting Excellence (CACE) honors the commitment and partnership between prime contractors, subcontractors, and awarding departments for their collective successes in support of Small Business (SB) and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) contracting achievements.
The 2015 award winners were:
- Barry S. Johnson, Shooting Star Solutions, LLC
- Jason Schwartz, i3Tech Data Solutions, Inc.
- Roberto Herrera, the Department of Veterans Affairs
The nominees were:
- Vikki Eszlinger, the Department of General Services
- William MacIntosh, Ray Gaskin Services
- Jason Farrell, Riverview International Trucks, LLC (not pictured)
Federal and State Government Certification Programs
Federal Government Programs:
Business owners interested in applying for certification can contact the Small Business Administration (SBA) who offer certifications based on social and economic status of business owners, women ownership, as well as Hub Zone Certification that is based on the location of the business and the employees. These programs require a majority owner that can meet the individual program requirements to apply and receive certification. Use the SBA ‘Contact Us’ link if you have additional questions about these certification programs.
State of California Departments with Federal Programs:
Business owners who are interested in obtaining federal certification for federally funded public works projects can visit the Department of Transportation (Caltrans) Office of Business and Economic Opportunity’s (OBEO) webpage for information and to download the application at http://www.dot.ca.gov/obeo/. The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) certification office is located in Sacramento and can be reached 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday – Friday, Pacific Time, excluding state holidays, at (916) 324-1700 or at DBE.Certification@dot.ca.gov. Only one federal certification is required for federally funded projects. Caltrans’ certification decisions are issued in approximately three to five months. Caltrans staff will visit the business location before a certification is issued.
Women, minority, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and disabled veteran-owned business owners who are seeking certification and information can visit the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) webpage. CPUC monitors a Utility Supplier Diversity Program in procurements by participating utilities and oversees the Supplier Clearinghouse. This program is governed by General Order 156. Direct certification questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or (562) 325-8685 & (800) 359-7998, Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time. Certification decisions are issued in approximately 45 days.
State of California Programs:
Business owners who are interested in Small Business (SB) certification and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE) certification can use these links to learn about the required documents to submit with the online application. Contact OSDS at OSDSHelp@dgs.ca.gov or (916) 375-4940, Monday – Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Pacific Time, excluding state holidays. Most small business certification decisions are issued upon completion of the online application.