DBE Supportive Services
VDOT Business Opportunity and Workforce Development Center
The Virginia Department of Transportation Business Opportunity and Workforce Development (BOWD) Center receives funding from the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) to implement the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Supportive Services Program.
The primary purpose of the DBE/SS program is to provide training, assistance and services to disadvantaged business enterprises to help these businesses grow, become self-sufficient, more competitive in pursuing federally funded contract opportunities, move into non-traditional areas of work and compete in the marketplace beyond the DBE program.
The BOWD Center is committed to helping DBE firms become more sustainable through an in depth comprehensive business assessment.
Program participants work with BOWD Center staff, business consultants and industry partners to complete/update business plans and develop work plans designed to improve key business functions leading to lower costs, higher profits and increased highway related contracts.
Additional BOWD Center resources include access to computers, conference room, plan room, library and other business-related amenities.
DBE firms that receive supportive services from the BOWD Center better position themselves to respond to solicitations competitively, win awards and successfully execute construction contracts.
Requirements for Receiving Supportive Services
The VDOT BOWD Center is committed to developing the skills of DBE firms to compete for and perform on federally assisted highway projects. DBE firms interested in receiving business assistance to help develop and grow their companies must meet the following criteria:
- DBE certification through the Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity or Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
- DBE firm’s home state must be Virginia
- DBE firm’s work must be highway-related
- Firms must complete DBE Readiness Tool
- Firms must submit a complete business assessment
“In order to meet the needs of each DBE firm, a BOWD Center representative will review the completed Readiness Tool and the work plan generated from the Development Portal for the development and growth of the firm.
The Readiness Tool provides basic company information and identifies the strengths and weaknesses of the firm.
The DBE Development Portal
The work plan generated by completing the business readiness tool will identify goals and objectives to be accomplished by the firm to develop and strengthen the company and supportive services will be made available based upon the needs of the firm.
To access the DBE Development Portal and complete a business readiness tool, click here.
The BOWD Center provides a variety of supportive services to DBE firms to help strengthen their infrastructure, increase capacity and profitability and the ability to move to the next level. Supportive services are available to DBE firms in the following areas:
- Project management
- Proposal writing
- Risk management
- Human resources
- Short-term lending
- Business plan development
- Cash flow analysis
- Cost accounting
- Construction management
- Estimating and bidding
The BOWD Center DBE/SS Program has a financial reimbursement component that provides DBE firms the opportunity to be reimbursed for pre-approved goods and services.
Reimbursements may include, but are not limited to, software purchases, industry related university or technical college courses, workshops, certification training and conference registration.
BOWD Center Educational Opportunities
The BOWD Center provides group workshops and training focused on providing the skills necessary to compete on federally assisted transportation contracts. Educational opportunities are generally provided at no cost.
To access the VDOT University Virtual Campus, you must have an established account. If you do not have an account in this system, you can request one by clicking on “Register” from the login page at: https://VirtualCampus.VDOT.Virginia.gov. Follow the prompts during the registration process to submit the request. Be sure you note your organization during this process so your account can be associated with the appropriate firm.
BOWD Center Tools
- 23 CFR 230.201-207, Subpart B
- SCORE – Service Corps of Retired Executives
- Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity
- eVA Virginia’s eProcurement Portal
- U. S. Small Business Administration
- Virginia Small Business Development Centers
- Crater Procurement Assistance Center
- Community College Workforce Alliance
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