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Office of Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization


Small and Veteran Business Programs

VA Small and Veteran Business Programs implement the requirements to aid, counsel, assist, and protect the interests of small and Veteran business concerns to ensure that the federal government awards these businesses a fair proportion of total VA property and services purchases, contracts, and subcontracts. For acquisition purposes, small and Veteran businesses must be independently owned and operated, not dominant in the field of operation in which they are bidding on government contracts, and otherwise qualify as small businesses according to Small Business Administration (SBA) criteria and size standards.

Select one of the following links to learn more about VA Small and Veteran Business Programs and how VA encourages the involvement of small businesses at the subcontract level.

Small Business Program Goals and Accomplishments

Goals for VA Small and Veteran Business Programs are aggressive and aimed at maximum utilization. View VA’s Small Business Procurement Scorecard and socioeconomic accomplishments for each type of reporting mechanism.
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Small Business Set-Asides

The small business set-aside program requires federal agencies to limit competition on certain contracts to qualified small businesses only so that these firms do not have to compete with large ones for the same contracts.

The law requires the federal government to buy at competitive prices. However, if an agency expects at least two small businesses to submit bids for a contract, then that contract is set aside to ensure adequate competition. SBA establishes size standards that determine if firms are eligible to present competitive offers in terms of market price, quality, and delivery. SBA establishes these standards on an industry-by-industry basis, using dollar volume of sales or number of employees to determine eligibility.

Additional Resources

Starting and Managing a Business External link to a government website

View this content for tips on what to consider when starting a business.

Loans and Grants External link to a government website

Find out what SBA funding is available for small businesses.

Contracting External link to a government website

Learn the basic steps to begin contracting with the federal government.

Learning Center External link to a government website

Discover self-paced courses that cover managing a business, financing, marketing, and more.

Non-Manufacturer Rule External link to a government website

The Non-Manufacturer Rule stipulates that "a recipient of a contract set aside for small business or the Small Business Administration (SBA) 8(a) contract program, other than the actual manufacturer or processor, must provide the products of a small business."

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For advice on potential procurement opportunities in your area, contact your local

VA Small Business Liaison.

Use the Inquiry Routing & Information System (IRIS) to access VA benefits and more.