Starting a small business isn't ever easy. However, there are some things that can make it harder for you to start your small business. Those things can include being part of a disadvantaged population. Luckily, there are government programs that can help you get your small business off the ground and help it grow. So, what do you have to do in order to qualify and access some of those programs?
There are a variety of things that could classify you as a member of a disadvantaged population. One of those things is being a member of certain racial groups. Groups that have been traditionally faced with any kind of prejudice or bias because of culture would count as a disadvantaged population. That would include African Americans, Native Americans, and Latinx.
You can also be a member of an economically disadvantaged population. That can be harder to define. Basically, it breaks down to people who have had less access to financial opportunities or advantages that could help them grow a business. For example, you could have limited access to getting a business loan because you don't have a co-signer or you haven't had the chance to build up enough credit to show that you are a good credit risk.
8(a) Small Business Development Program
If you are the owner of a small, disadvantaged business, meaning that you are either a member of a disadvantaged population or that at least 51% of your business is held by a member of a disadvantaged population, then you may qualify for this program. There are a lot of benefits to applying to the 8(a) program. One is that it is designed to boost the economic potential of your business. One way that it does that is to help you get sole-source contracts. These contracts will help you grow your business and your experience, which can help you go out and be more competitive in finding other contracts and contacts that will help your business. You can also join together with other small disadvantaged businesses to make a joint bid on a contract. For example, if you have a roofing company, you can join with a general contractor to bid on a particular project. The project may be too big for either one of you on your own, but together, you are big enough.
If you are trying to run a small business, you need to have as much help as possible, and you may qualify for a program that can help you. Talk to companies like ARA Consulting, LLC, to learn more.