The COVID-19 pandemic has posed a challenge in both our personal and our professional settings. The government marketplace has made significant adjustments, from shifting purchasing priorities and thresholds to modifying requirements and communication methods. Here are some steps we can take to adapt, survive, and even thrive in the current environment.
If you aren’t already, now is the time to acclimate yourself to virtual meetings and webinars. Much of what is being disseminated in the form of real-time updates comes in the form of webinars, virtual Q & A’s, and virtual town hall meetings. Although you cannot attend everything, make sure to identify key issues, regulations, agencies, and experts that are providing updates and attend these events. If unable to attend, oftentimes by simply registering you will receive the slides and audio so that you can listen at your leisure.
Continue to conduct research on what the government is buying. If you are able to supply any essential needs i.e. masks, gloves, hand sanitizer, gowns, shields, and the like, make sure that you notify appropriate agencies of your capabilities. This includes completing all registrations, conducting proactive marketing through emails and phone calls, and responding to bid requests, where appropriate. Our COVID-19 Resources page is updated daily and is an excellent resource for determining which agencies have a need, and also includes a list of relevant webinars, agency guidelines, and advice from industry experts. If you have a contract, consistently communicate with key stakeholders about the status of the project and be sure to get any changes in writing.
Use this time to plan for the next opportunity. Although the government is focused on essential items, this may include products or services that you might not think are essential, and further, the government may be soliciting products or services now that will be needed post-pandemic. Essentially, when the country completely opens up, will you fall right in step because of active monitoring of contract opportunities and nurturing of business relationships, or will you be behind the curve because you were waiting for the pandemic to end? Invest time getting your registrations, certifications, accounting system, supply chain, marketing strategy, etc. in order so that you don’t miss a beat when all contracting resumes.
We’re here to support you during this unprecedented time. Reach out to your Procurement Specialist or apply for no-cost government contracting support HERE.
Written by Christina Jones, Sr./Lead Procurement Specialist, Norcal PTAC