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Founder’s Desk: Implementing a successful small business subcontracting plan, Part 2 of 2

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by ConnXus on December 5, 2012

Editor’s Note: This is the second of a two-part series written by ConnXus founder Founder & Chief Connector Rod Robinson. You can read the Part 1 here.

Below are some tips for implementing a successful small business subcontracting plan:

Conduct an analysis of each category of spend: Analysis of total current spend as well as determining current diversity spend and supplier demographics is a critical first step in any supplier diversity effort. Understanding how we are currently performing within each spend category as well as within each diverse supplier classification, will play a key role in helping us develop realistic spend goals.

Set realistic spend goals: Conducting a thorough analysis of current spend and supplier profiles on the front end will be the key here. Output of the analysis should enable the construction of a matrix showing a listing of key spend categories that includes an indication of diverse supplier availability within each spend category. This will not only support “bottom-up” development of realistic goals, but also identify areas for more aggressive supplier outreach and development.

Identify alternate sources of diverse suppliers and outreach: This is particularly important within any underrepresented categories identified during the analysis. A few new services have emerged over the past couple of years to make it easier for corporate buyers to locate and engage diverse suppliers.

Establish policy/practice of posting bid opportunities within target categories to drive tier 1: Make it a policy to include at least 2 diverse suppliers in any products or services going out for bid. As long as the steps above are being followed, building a qualified pool of diverse suppliers should not be a problem in most cases.

Optimize the tier 2 reporting process by through automation: Many organizations are not even scratching the surface when it comes to quantifying and reporting tier 2 diversity spend. This is primarily because manual processes are still quite prevalent. This approach makes it difficult to collect, analyze and report from more than a few companies. The ConnXus Tier 2 Reporting Tool allows tier 1 majority suppliers to simply upload directly into a portal. This tool makes it possible to capture tier 2 spend from hundreds of prime suppliers which could provide a significant boost to total diversity spend.

Leverage available technology solutions to streamline the reporting process: Leveraging an automated tier 2 solution, as described above, provides the perfect foundation to streamline the entire FAR 52.219-9 annual reporting process.


ConnXus helps grow small, woman- and minority-owned businesses by connecting them to Fortune 2000 corporations seeking a competitive edge through supplier diversity. Learn more at

Posted in: About, Direct Diversity Spend, Diversity Spend, Help Diverse Suppliers, Indirect Diversity Spend, Minority Business Certification, Supplier Diversity, Supplier Diversity Program

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Rod Robinson

The ConnXion Point is the blog for, an online service connecting small, minority- and woman-owned businesses with companies seeking to hire diverse suppliers.

I'm Rod Robinson, founder and chief connector of I've spent 15 years in the procurement business as a minority business owner, company procurement officer and industry consultant.

The ConnXion Point will focus on issues, events and news about procurement and supplier diversity. So, whether you're purchasing or selling, we'll have information you can use. We also hope to facilitate a healthy, respectful exchange of viewpoints on issues surrounding supplier diversity and procurement.

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