The Department of Defense (DoD) may face challenges as it attempts to maintain its goal of spending about 23 percent of prime-contract dollars for goods and services with small businesses and at the same time apply strategic-sourcing practices to reduce total costs and improve performance and efficiency and in ways that will not conflict with small-business goals.
Small Business and Strategic Sourcing
Lessons from Past Research and Current Data
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- Do employee- based, receipts-based, or some other criteria better define a small business in each industry?
- What are some of the problems with the current industry definitions and thresholds used to define a business as
- How can small businesses be defined in such a way as to both boost those businesses and help DoD be more efficient and effective?
- How can DoD use strategic sourcing to reduce its total costs?
- How can DoD meet its small business goals?
The Department of Defense (DoD) may face challenges as it attempts to maintain its goal of spending about 23 percent of its prime-contract dollars for goods and services with small businesses and at the same time apply strategic-sourcing practices to reduce total costs and improve performance in ways that will not conflict with small-business goals while making DoD purchasing more effective and efficient. Strategic sourcing practices, for example, recommend consolidation of the supply base to reduce total costs, which can lead to fewer, larger, longer-term contracts with fewer and, often, larger suppliers.
Ways to Classify Businesses as "Small" Should be Improved
- Classifications should consider whether the industry in question is homogeneous in firm size and spending among its subindustries.
- For several industries, regulators may wish to reconsider whether an employee-based, receipt-based, or some other measure is most appropriate for size classification.
- When considering measures to classify firms as "small," policymakers should consider the minimum size firms need to be to remain competitive.
- They should also take into account the size needed to attract credit.
- Consideration should also be given to the minimum size needed to administer a federal contract.
- The competitiveness of the industry should also be factored into discussions about firm size.
Table of Contents
The Intersection of Small-Business Policies and Strategic-Sourcing Practices
Origins and Intents of Small-Business Contracting Policy
Composition of Small-Business Purchases by DoD and Its Implications for Strategic Sourcing
Identifying Specific Opportunities for Strategic Sourcing and Implications for Small-Business Procurement
Conclusions and Recommendations: Improving the Classification of Small Businesses and Adjusting to Changing DoD Needs
Overview of Data Used in the Analyses