USFCR Blog

The 2020 Ultimate Guide to the Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR)

Mar 25, 2020 12:44:16 PM / by USFCR Academy posted in USFCR Academy, General Government Contracting, Guides

The Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR) form government solicitations and contracts. As a result, the sections are mostly written for the government officials who are building the contracts. However, businesses shouldn't dismiss the FAR either. Not only do they relate to compliance, but also they can give you a serious advantage in government contracting.

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Reading the FAR: The Quick Guide for 2020

Jan 16, 2020 9:00:00 AM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

This is your ultimate (and quick) guide to approach the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). Here, we are going to cover: 

  • What is the FAR?
  • How the FAR is broken down? 
  • Key Sections for Contractors. 
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B2G Points of Contact Guide for 2020

Jan 10, 2020 3:09:29 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Information for New Vendors, Guides

In any system, communication is key. The same applies to when businesses contract with the federal a government. For this blog post, we're going to cover points of contact. Without a firm understanding of this concept, you will be at a disadvantage in the federal marketplace. 

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Beta SAM - Contract Opportunities (FBO) Guide for Businesses 2020

Nov 18, 2019 2:59:58 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in System for Award Management (SAM), Contract Bidding, Guides

Anyone who wants to get into government contracting is going to run into beta.SAM.gov (Beta SAM). There's no way around it. The next question most of us will have next is:

"What can I do with Beta SAM and how do I use to search for contracts?"

If you're asking this question, then you've come to the right place. In this blog post, we'll take you from start to finish on Beta SAM. After reading this, you will have a comprehension of...

  • What happened to FedBizOpps? 
  • What is Beta SAM?
  • Registering for Beta SAM
  • Finding Government Contracts on Beta SAM
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Bid Protests: A Quick Rundown for Q1 2020

Oct 31, 2019 3:27:53 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Contract Bidding, Guides, News

In the first quarter of the fiscal year, the Pentagon awarded its prestigious $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) contract to Microsoft. 

For now. 

That's because if you've been reading up on this contract, you would know it was riddled with disputes. One of which was a bid protest made by Oracle Corporation. Then, right after Microsoft was awarded, it was expected Amazon Web Services would file one as well. 

In this blog post, we're going to give you the rundown on bid protests.

We are going to answer:  

  • What is a bid protest? 
  • Why are bid protests filed?
  • Where do I file a bid protest? 
  • How should I approach bid protests? 

Let's begin. 

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The Top 3 Problems Contractors Face with New Gov Systems and Policies

Oct 23, 2019 2:34:16 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Advanced Procurement Portal (APP), Guides, News

This November, FedBizOpps (FBO) is set to merge with beta.SAM

With that in mind, it's time to talk about past big changes in the federal marketplace. That's because with every major change comes major problems. How you handle these problems will determine your success or failure in government contracting. 

In this blog post, we're going to cover common issues that contractors face whenever the federal government implements a new policy or system. When you know about what issues to expect, you'll be better equipped to handle them. 

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Does the Lowest Bidder Always Win?

Oct 21, 2019 2:15:33 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Information for New Vendors, Guides

“I felt exactly how you would feel if you were getting ready to launch and knew you were sitting on top of 2 million parts – all built by the lowest bidder on a government contract.”

This apocryphal quote comes from the early days of NASA. Some attribute it to Alan Sheppard. Others claim it was John Glenn.

Either way, no one can agree on who said it or the exact phrasing. What did happen though, was the perpetuation of a government contracting myth: it always comes down to the lowest bidder.

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Top 10 NAICS Codes for HHS Contracts

Oct 11, 2019 4:53:34 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in USFCR Academy, Guides

Market research is crucial for success in government contracting. After all, you should know who is buying what so you can find your target customers. If you're considering contracting with the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), here's a list of the top 10 industries for HHS contracts from the previous fiscal year.

The information used to write this blog post was extracted from the Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS). This list is made up of the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) codes associated with each top industry.

Let's start the countdown. 

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Communicating with Email to Contracting Officers Video

Sep 3, 2019 3:07:00 PM / by David Rockwell posted in Guides, Videos

If you can make your company known to a contracting officer before bidding, you are going to improve your chances of winning government contracts. Reaching out to them through email is an effective way to accomplish this. Get more responses to your B2G emails with the tips in this video.

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VIPR

Aug 16, 2019 4:31:16 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

Only you can prevent forest fires and by working with the US Forest Service (USFS), you can help stop them as well. To do so, you need to know how to do business with the USFS and learn the basics of VIPR.

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Beyond FBO: Top 5 OTHER Places You Can Find Contracts

May 21, 2019 12:03:37 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Contract Bidding, Advanced Procurement Portal (APP), Guides

Anyone who works in the federal sector should at least know about FedBizOpps and how to use it. What you should also know is that FedBizOpps ISN'T the only place where you can find contracting opportunities with the federal government. So, from Unison (formerly FedBid) to DIBBS, we're going to show you 5 OTHER places where you can find contracting opportunities.

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Using Small Business Goals for Your B2G Strategy

May 14, 2019 3:31:12 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

What sounds more intimidating than B2G (business to government) marketing?

B2G marketing as...a small business.

Well fear not!

In this simple, plain English, no-frills guide, we're going to give you the cornerstone you need to get started on your small B2G marketing strategy. This is one piece of knowledge that tons of people are paying money to consultants to find out.

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The 2019 Contractor's Guide to Dun and Bradstreet Numbers

Mar 18, 2019 3:19:13 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

Here it is. Everything that government contractors ask about the Dun and Bradstreet number (aka DUNS number) is in this quick, and easy-to-read guide.

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One trick to BOOST your chances of winning a federal contract

Mar 18, 2019 11:47:48 AM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

EVERYONE knows that you need to build a relationship with Contracting Officers, but have you ever considered factoring the End User (aka the person who actually uses your products/services) into the equation?

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IWD 2019: Programs and Certifications For Woman-Owned Businesses

Mar 8, 2019 2:48:27 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Women Owned Small Business (WOSB/EDWOSB), Guides

March 8, 2019 marks the 109th annual observance of International Women’s Day (IWD). On top of that, March is also recognized in the U.S. as Women’s History Month. So in the spirit of IWD and Women's History Month, let's talk about the various certifications and resources that are exclusively available for female entrepreneurs. Mainly, we'll be talking about the Woman-Owned Business Certification and the Woman-Owned Small Business Set-Aside.

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Economically Disadvantaged

Feb 21, 2019 1:27:44 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in 8(a) Business Development Program, Women Owned Small Business (WOSB/EDWOSB), Guides

As a government contractor (or prospective one), you’ve probably seen the term “economically
disadvantaged” pop-up here and there. Mainly, you’re going to see it when it pertains to 8(a) Business Development Program and the Economically Disadvantaged Women Owned Small Business (EDWOSB) set-aside. Both of these programs, if you are qualified, can provide you a wide array of opportunities in the federal marketplace.

So in this blog post, we’re going to cover what it means to economically disadvantaged as well as socially disadvantaged .

Let’s get to it.

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DARPA

Feb 4, 2019 11:42:06 AM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

If you're a government contractor or you're looking to get into this sector you've probably seen the name "DARPA" get thrown around. So what does DARPA stand for?

It's an acronym for:

  • Defense
  • Advanced
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Writing a Winning Capabilities Statement in 2020

Feb 2, 2019 1:22:00 PM / by USFCR posted in Guides

Basically, if you want to unlock a wider range of opportunities and increase your cash flow from federal contracting, this is the guide for you.

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Factors to Consider After the Shutdown

Jan 28, 2019 5:06:37 PM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides, News

It's over. It's finally over. The 2018-2019 government shutdown was the longest one on record lasting for 35 days. To put it lightly, things were put to a halt at a bit. However, as a contractor, you're going to want to hit the ground running. Here are four main factors that you need to consider as you get back into the federal marketplace. Everyone's situation is going to be a bit different, so let this guide serve as just a general outline.

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DFARS Compliance: The 2019 Guide

Jan 14, 2019 9:42:47 AM / by Hayden Johnson posted in Guides

You're probably familiar with the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR). It's pretty much the rule book for federal contracting on both sides of the table. If you're looking to set up shop with the Department of Defense (DoD), you're going to want to get familiar with a supplement of FAR called DFARS and learn how to maintain DFARS compliance.

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