Sept. 9, 2021
NDIA supports DoD effort to learn from small businesses to improve operations
ARLINGTON, VA – The National Defense Industrial Association urges small businesses to tell the Defense Department their experiences – the good and the bad — in trying to become part of the defense supply chain, the Arlington, Virginia-based trade association announces.
NDIA is assisting the Defense Department’s effort to bring more small businesses to the table. To that end, DoD issued a Federal Register notice Sept. 8<https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/09/08/2021-19352/notice-of-request-for-comments-on-barriers-facing-small-businesses-in-contracting-with-the>, asking small businesses for comments on the hurdles they face in defense contracting. Responses will go directly into the DoD’s overall small-business strategy.
The move comes after an address from Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks to a Pennsylvania commerce gathering Sept. 1. “We are committed to examining the administrative barriers that small businesses face in working with us,” she said. “We will take meaningful action to remove barriers where we can.”
ML Mackey, chair of NDIA’s small-business division, encourages companies – members and non-members – to respond to the DoD’s request with honesty and transparency.
“Remember back to when you first got involved with DoD: What enabled you to engage effectively? Are those mechanisms and pathways still in place? Are they easier? Are they more difficult? These are the things DoD needs to know to clear barriers to bring in more small businesses, creating that rich and diverse defense industrial base that can most effectively support the needs of our warfighters,” she said.
Ally Veres, vice chair of the small-business division, called DoD’s effort a solid step in the right direction. “We’re delighted DoD is reaching out to better understand barriers to entry” she said. “This is a great opportunity for us to provide insight into where well-meaning efforts may have inadvertently brought about unintended consequences for small-business entry and ongoing engagement in the defense industrial base.”
Comments are due by Oct. 25. For details, please see the notice in the Federal Register<https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2021/09/08/2021-19352/notice-of-request-for-comments-on-barriers-facing-small-businesses-in-contracting-with-the>.
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