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What Is a Subcontracting Agreement in Federal Contracting?

Steps leading up to the Capitol building with an American flag.The federal government spent more than $665 billion on contracts in 2020, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office. While there are many contracts set aside for small businesses, there are many more that are too large in scope for a small business contractor. Find out how you can connect with a prime contractor to win a subcontracting role with the help of Rafael Marrero & Company.

Prime Contractors

Prime contractors can be your first point of contact with the federal government. You can find answers to questions like, “What is federal contracting?” The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) outlines the roles and responsibilities of prime contractors and subcontractors. Typically, prime contractors are large corporations with a proven track record of working with specific federal agencies or branches of the military.

These corporations have a federal obligation to set aside a portion of the contract to award to small businesses. If your business meets the subcontracting qualifications, per the SBA, you may be able to work with the federal government through a subcontracting agreement.

Steps to Become a Subcontractor

Subcontracting is the process of being hired by a prime contractor to fulfill contractual obligations. To become a subcontractor, you must typically take the following steps:

  1. Register your business with the System for Award Management (SAM)
  2. Explore subcontracting opportunities through Government Services Administration (GSA) Schedules
  3. Contact the decision-maker in the prime contracting firm
  4. Submit a capability statement, capability briefing or other federal branding materials

In many cases, a prime contractor may be the best way to first introduce your company to the U.S. government. Get to know the important corporations that you can partner with as you become a trusted supplier for federal projects.

These steps may be more complicated than they appear. To navigate this process and sign your first subcontracting agreement, consider partnering with a management consultancy team.

Connect With Prime Contractors With Rafael Marrero & Company

With decades of experience in subcontracting, Dr. Rafael Marrero is an excellent resource throughout the process. Request a consultation to learn more about finding opportunities and signing an agreement as you work for the U.S. government.

Dr. Rafael Marrero

A nationally recognized expert in federal contracting, small business entrepreneurship, vendor, and project/program management. A graduate of the prestigious Stanford and Cornell Universities, Dr. Rafael Marrero is a former Fortune 500 procurement executive, two-time Inc. 500 honoree, network news commentator, and Amazon best-selling author.

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