Interested in getting your woman-owned business certified? There are many benefits to certifications through a third-party certifier like the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) or soon-to-be NAWBO and the Small Business Association (SBA), yet not all businesses are candidates. Take this quick self-assessment to learn if certification is right for your business.
1) Does your product/service target corporations, retail and/or government agencies?
Most often, only corporations, government agencies and retail entities request certification. Some government agencies may also require specific, in-house certifications.
2) Does your business have the ability to provide quality services/products on large contracts?
Corporate and government contracts tend to be very large—be sure your small business is prepared to fulfill contracts that are larger than you may be accustomed to. If you aren’t super confident about being able to fulfill, there may also be opportunities to serve as a subcontractor under a primary supplier.
3) Are you prepared to provide financial details about your business?
It’s important to understand that a key part of the certification process is a thorough analysis of your financial documents, including tax returns, capital investments and compensation records. All this information will be kept completely confidential, but must be provided.
4) Do you understand that certifications are marketing tools and do not guarantee your business will receive corporate, government or retail contracts?
If your business is certified, you are responsible for marketing your business as certified to targeted corporate, government or retail agencies that need your products or services. However, one benefit provided to WBEs is access to a current list of supplier diversity and procurement executives.
If you answered “yes” to all questions above, your business may be a good candidate for certification!
Be sure to also check out the article in this month’s issue of NAWBO ONE about the “Power of Certification” and why and how NAWBO is stepping into this arena starting this summer.