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Now that you are thinking of your business in terms of the end items that you are capable of providing, you are ready to identify prospective customers: the buying offices within the federal government that have a need for your product or service.
A simple rule of thumb is that if the item is a commercial-type or general-purpose item, there is a good chance that the General Services Administration (GSA) buys it for both the military and civilian offices. Think of the GSA as the "Sears and Roebuck" of the government. This doesn't mean that the military or a civilian office won't be using the product; it just means that the GSA may issue the contract, and other government offices, both military and civilian, can buy off of that contract.
If the item or service is predominately military in nature, then one of the Department of Defense buying offices would be the place to go. The same is true for civilian agencies; if energy related, you may want to check out the Department of Energy as a probable customer. There are a number of ways to find the appropriate buying offices:
- Search FedBizOpps
- Use the personal touch
- Subscribe to a bid-matching service
- Work with a Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)
- Do your best to get to know the GSA