The Laboratory is committed to partnering with small businesses, and could not be successful in its work for the nation without the help of hundreds of subcontractors. In fiscal year 2020, the Laboratory spent $413 million with New Mexico small businesses.
To deepen and extend these partnerships, the Lab’s Small Business Programs Office (SBPO) offer a number of outreach opportunities to connect and engage with those in the local, regional and national business communities.
These include hosting monthly subcontractor forums to share information about doing business with the Lab and to discuss upcoming business opportunities. Previously held in person, the Lab hosted its first virtual forum in April 2020 with 180 registrants. Within a short time, attendance soared as the online platform made it easier for people to attend. The Dec. 2020 event saw 763 registrants.
In addition to updates on forthcoming procurement opportunities, recent events also covered sustainable acquisition and how LANL subcontractors and vendors can help, and information on making sure Lab safety and security procedures are followed.
“These forums are a great way to reach existing and potential subcontractors, and make sure they’re getting the information they need to work successfully with the Laboratory,” said LANL’s Acquisition Services Management Division Leader, Drew Fuller. “We’re delighted to see the positive response the events have received from the business community.”
Procurement transformation underway
Reaching out to the community of current and potential subcontractors is particularly important right now, as the Laboratory undertakes a range of new construction and infrastructure improvement projects. The Lab is also moving to a new digital procurement platform to streamline processes and make it easier to work with LANL.
Forums and other outreach activities are part of reaching the Lab’s goal of purchasing more than 63% of its goods and services from small businesses in fiscal year 2021. In addition to that overall target, LANL is committed to meet procurement goals for particular categories of business, including woman-owned, and businesses based in disadvantaged areas.
To help meet these goals, the SBPO helps Lab personnel identify opportunities to use small businesses for procurement needs, and posts solicitations and forecasted procurement opportunities on LANL’s small business opportunities website and other public venues.
Recordings and slides from previous subcontractor forums are available online. You can also register to receive invitations to future events.