Strategy 2: Focus, and be picky

Reliable Integration Services' Valerie Perlowitz: "Having small business status doesn't necessarily give you the right to get any work on a contract. You still have to be good at what you do."

A successful small business excels at a few things, said Valerie Perlowitz, president and chief executive officer of Reliable Integration Services Inc. in Dunn Loring, Va.

"If you say, I am going to do business process re-engineering, networking, software development, etc., etc., you never build a base of clients and the infrastructure to support them," she said.

Reliable, a 14-year-old, woman-owned small business, specializes in networking solutions. The firm employs about 50 people and has revenue of less than $10 million a year.

As small businesses grow, they find themselves competing against much larger firms with a wider range of capabilities, so they must use their bid and proposal dollars wisely, said Gregory Freeland, president of mid-sized RGII Technologies Inc. in Annapolis, Md.

Small companies "bid on everything," he said. "As you get bigger, you have to bid less."

RGII, a 13-year-old, 350-employee company, focuses on information security, software development, information management and program management. It has $50 million in annual revenue.

RGII narrows down the jobs it will pursue by working on its bids at least six months in advance of the agency's request for proposal, Freeland said. Staff members research the proposed project and work to get RGII's capabilities incorporated into the agency's statement of work, or description of tasks to be performed under the upcoming contract.

"If I have a product or past performance that I think is unique, I need to get that into the statement of work," Freeland said.

Reader Comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

What is your e-mail address?

My e-mail address is:

Do you have a password?

Forgot your password? Click here


  • Dive into our Contract Award database

    In an exclusive for WT Insider members, we are collecting all of the contract awards we cover into a database that you can sort by contractor, agency, value and other parameters. You can also download it into a spreadsheet. Our databases track awards back to 2013. Read More

  • Navigating the trends and issues of 2016 Nick Wakeman

    In our latest WT Insider Report, we pull together our best advice, insights and reporting on the trends and issues that will shape the market in 2016 and beyond. Read More

contracts DB

Washington Technology Daily

Sign up for our newsletter.

Terms and Privacy Policy consent

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.