Recently I sat down with our regular guest poster Eileen Kent for an interview, only this time she asked the questions! You can listen to our entire conversation at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/linkedlocalnetwork/2013/10/15/federal-sales-sherpa-show, and you can also read our discussion about LinkedIn as a networking tool for federal contractors.
Eileen: I have a quick question in regards to small businesses contracting directly with the government. Getting paid from the government isn’t so tough as it is getting paid from a prime, do you agree?
Bill: That’s correct because the government has an obligation. They specifically run according to some obligations about everything that you’re going to do and how fast it’s going to be delivered. And this has actually gotten way, way easier now because it’s all been automated (while primes can be slow to pay).
Everything you do through DFAS, the Defense Financial and Accounting folks, is completely automated, and the money comes to you on a lot better basis than it used to. For a company like TAPE, what we call ‘Day Sales Outstanding’ or DSO, is running around 45 days. In the old days, 60 to 75 days was not at all unusual.
Eileen: Forty-five days in this marketplace, that’s not too bad.
Bill: No, not too bad at all. Absolutely.
Eileen: So do you suggest that small businesses start thinking about finding a way to make it in for themselves as the prime, if they can?
Bill: That’s correct. And there are ways in which you can do that. It’s about talking to a customer and establishing a set of relationships and then going through the process of obtaining an actual prime contract of your own. Those things are exactly what we need, all of us.
It’s important to understand the difference between being a prime contractor or a subcontractor. As a prime you’ll have a much more decent relationship between you and the actual customer. But it’s important to note, if you have a prime, that the prime is your customer and you have to build a relationship with the prime just like you would with any other customer.
Thanks again for the interview, Eileen! You can listen to our whole conversation at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/linkedlocalnetwork/2013/10/15/federal-sales-sherpa-show.
We urge you to consider… the rest of the story on the “Getting Paid” topic. Although the gov’t has an obligation to pay both DBEs and small businesses in ‘accelerated fashion,'(for DBEs is ‘upon presentation of documents’ and for ALL small biz, ‘within 15 days,’) the contracting community isn’t listening, some are even claiming ‘their units are not required to obey ‘Executive Orders.’ We owe to know, our FPA Think Tank succeeded, in convincing DFAS to admit and comply with the regulations. That action was credited with also inspiring the ‘Fast Pay’ Executive Order. Unfortunately neither effort has convinced the bureaucrats to comply and we’re getting ready to announce it, with cases to prove it. You can read about our successes on the following link, http://bit.ly/10IaJwO
The FPA Think Tank will appreciate your assistance in bringing this subject to the attention of your followers.
Thank you for the opportunity to make a difference,
Thanks for your comment, Raul. If you’d like to tell the rest of the story, feel free to submit a guest blog post. We’ll be in touch with details.
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