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Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program

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Women-Owned Small Business Federal Contract Program

Latest News Release: February 1, 2011 – SBA Expands Access to Federal Contracting Opportunities for Women-Owned Small Businesses

Memo from the Administrator

On October 7, 2010, the U.S. Small Business Administration published a final rule effective February 4, 2011, aimed at expanding federal contracting opportunities for women-owned small businesses (WOSBs). The Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) Federal Contract program authorizes contracting officers to set aside certain federal contracts for eligible:

  • Women-owned small businesses (WOSBs) or

  • Economically disadvantaged women-owned small businesses (EDWOSBs)

WOSB Program Information
WOSB Program Fact Sheet
WOSB Program Frequently Asked Questions or FAQs
WOSB Program Applicable NAICS Codes
Compliance Guide for the WOSB Program
Contracting Officer’s Guide for the WOSB Program

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible, a firm must be at least 51% owned and controlled by one or more women, and primarily managed by one or more women. The women must be U.S. citizens. The firm must be “small” in its primary industry in accordance with SBA’s size standards for that industry. In order for a WOSB to be deemed “economically disadvantaged,” it's owners must demonstrate economic disadvantage in accordance with the requirements set forth in the final rule.

WOSB Program Certification

There are two ways to certify for the WOSB program:

Self-certification with supporting documents, or
Third-Party Certification with supporting documents

Getting Started

For a quick overview of the WOSB Program and what businesses need to do to participate, click here to view a short presentation. For detailed information about the WOSB Program, see the “WOSB Program Information” section.

5 Steps to participate in the WOSB program:

  1. Read the WOSB Federal Contract program regulations in the Federal Register and the WOSB Compliance Guide.

  2. Register in Central Contractor Registration (CCR) as WOSB or EDWOSB.*

  3. Log onto SBA’s General Login System (GLS). *Obtain an account now if you don’t already have one

  4. Go to the WOSB program repository (through GLS) and upload / categorize all required documents.

  5. Represent your status in Online Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA).*

*The CCR and ORCA system updates to accommodate the new business types are currently in process by the General Services Administration. These updates are expected to be completed in April of 2011.

WOSB Program Repository

To access the WOSB Program Repository, users must first login to SBA’s General Login System (GLS). If you do not have an account:

  • Log onto SBA’s General Login System (GLS)

  • Click on “Instructions for GLS” for information on how to request an account

  • Go to “Request SBA User ID” to create an account

Once you are in GLS, click the “Access” button at the top of the screen. Then select “Women-Owned Small Business Program Repository” and press submit. You should then be able to access the repository. Once you are in the repository, you can click the “Help” button at the top of the screen for instructions on how to use the repository.

**A complete list of required documents to upload to the Repository can be found in the Compliance Guide for the WOSB Program. All eligible WOSBs and EDWOSBs who would like to participate in this program must complete and sign the WOSB or EDWOSB certification form below and upload it into the repository.

WOSB OMB Approved Form 3245-0374
EDWOSB OMB Approved Form 3245-0374

WOSB Program Third-Party Certification

If a WOSB chooses to obtain third-party certification, they may only obtain certification from SBA-approved third-party certifiers. At this time, SBA has not approved any third party certifiers. A list of approved third-party certifiers will be posted on this site after they have been approved.

If you are interested in becoming a SBA-approved third-party certifier, you must complete and submit an application no later than March 1, 2011. Click here to download the application and submission instructions.

*Please note that this is the first version of the third-party certifier application. SBA welcomes comments and suggestions on how to improve the application and will refine it over time. We plan to open the third-party certifier application process every six months. Please email your comments to SBA’s Office of Contract Assistance.

Questions about the WOSB Program?

SBA Answer Desk
1-800-U-ASK-SBA (1-800-827-5722)
Answer Desk TTY: (704) 344-6640
Email: wosb@sba.gov.

In addition to our website and the SBA Answer Desk, there are a number of resources available to help answer questions about the WOSB program:

Visit a local resource:

Small Business District Offices
Find your local office at: http://www.sba.gov/about-offices-list/2

Women’s Business Centers
Find your local center at: http://www.sba.gov/content/womens-business-centers

Small Business Development Centers
Find your local center at: http://www.asbdc-us.org/

Procurement Technical Assistance Centers
Find your local center at: http://www.aptac-us.org/new/


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