GovEvolve is the leading advocacy organization for small and midsize businesses that support government innovation. GovEvolve works to support the technology industry by promoting public policies that encourage innovation and competitiveness. As the voice for these diverse businesses, GovEvolve’s mission is to help ensure that the government has access to the most modern technology. Despite the fact that governmentwide IT spend totals billions each year, the government continues to support IT equipment well beyond its intended lifecycle. Agencies that have begun to adopt emerging technologies like mobile, wearables, and IOT, struggle to keep pace with issues such as cybersecurity threats. GovEvolve supports mitigating the impediments to federal procurement and ensuring a robust acquisition landscape through engagement on the following issues:
1. Create a dedicated ITVAR NAICS code. The ITVAR exception under NAICS code 541519 is insufficient to categorize the products and services required in recent complex agency IT procurements. Issues and restrictions surrounding small business procurements have led to frequent misclassification of IT acquisitions and potential liability for contractors. Creating a dedicated ITVAR NAICS code would enable small contractors to provide the best possible IT solutions to the Government.
2. Align the SBA’s small business size standards to keep pace with the federal government’s larger buying trends. Ensuring NAICS codes used by resellers reflect the size of contracts/task orders being awarded by federal agencies is important to the survival of these small businesses. IT resellers typically operate on low margins – even though their annual receipts may be high, the size standard should be based on employee count rather than annual revenue.
3. Increase utilization of small business sole source awards. As the government continues to increase buying through larger vehicles and move away from direct contracts, there are less opportunities for small businesses to participate in the federal marketplace. To create a more harmonized contracting system to utilize small businesses, sole source thresholds should be raised for individual-owned 8(a), SDVOSB, HUBZone and WOSBs by removing option years and streamlining requirements for sole source contracts.
4. Encourage federal prime contractors to utilize small business subcontractors listed on their subcontracting plans. While the dollars awarded to small businesses remains fairly consistent, the industrial base continues to shrink each year. Therefore, subcontracting continues to be a viable avenue for small businesses to participate in the federal market. Creating more certainty for small businesses in this space is critical to their success.