Department of Defense small business (SB) program: a knowledge-level analysis of how customer education relates to meeting SB goals
Roseboro, Duaita D.
Rutkovitz, Jared M.
Yoder, E. Cory
Landale, Karen A.F.
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For more than a decade, the federal government, to include the Department of Defense (DOD), has consistently failed to meet its congressionally mandated small business goals. Part of this problem has been attributed to the lack of emphasis on market research to identify small businesses that can provide the goods and services required. A partial remedy is holding leadership more accountable for small business award performance in their organizations, which has shown immediate improvements in the DOD’s small business utilization performance. Is this remedy, however, the solution to solving a decade-long issue? Research indicates that there are other key players who can substantially affect achievement of small business goals. The requirement generator (e.g., program manager, technical expert, or customer) serves as one of these key players. Requirement generators are responsible for defining the requirement, driving the acquisition strategy, and performing market research to identify contractors. Because requirement generators are not adequately educated and trained on the importance of the small business program, there is not enough emphasis on supporting small businesses during the initial phases of the acquisition process. Our research shows that educating requirement generators is another way to improve DOD’s achievement of small business goals.
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