Supplier Diversity Certification – Overview

Several prospective clients, past clients, and consulting colleagues have asked whether R|CAT is certified. As of November 2015 –

No, R|CAT is not yet certified.
Yes, R|CAT was previously certified under several criteria.
Yes, R|CAT is applying for certification to organizations, where R|CAT fulfills the certification criteria.

About this post. This overview is the first of several posts sharing R|CAT’s afternoons of in real time blogging about gathering information to submit certification applications for select certifying entities

UPDATE: Posts related to R|CAT’s certification endeavors are tagged certification for ease of reference.


Why Certify

In short, government agencies, regulated businesses, and other organizations have procurement goals for procuring products and services from certified business entities.

What does certified mean? A business may become certified by qualifying and fulfilling certification criteria, depending on the certifying organization requirements. Some organizations have a fee for certification, while many do not have fees. All organizations have application forms.

As one example, the California Public Utilities Commission’s (CPUC’s) Supplier Diversity Program states –

Our program monitors supplier diversity in procurements by participating utilities and oversees a clearinghouse of women; minority; lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT); and disabled veteran-owned business enterprises.  

For reference,the CPUC compiled a table (.pdf) of available certifications.

AvailableCertifications2AvailableCertifications1

Fulfilling Certification Criteria

Each certifying entity has prescriptive criteria. Based on a cursory review of the available certifications, R|CAT may secure certification for the following:

    • Woman Owned Business Enterprise
      (The Supplier Clearinghouse under CPUC supervision)
    • Minority Owned Business Enterprise
      (The Supplier Clearinghouse under CPUC supervision)
    • Small Business Enterprise or Microbusiness Enterprise
      (Department of General Services (DGS))
    • Disadvantaged Business Enterprise
      (California Unified Certification Program (CUCP) under the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), CalTrans)
    • 8(a) Business Development Program
      (U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA))
    • Women Owned Small Business
      (U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA))
    • Women’s Business Enterprise
      (Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC))
    • Minority Business Enterprise
      (National Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc. (NMSDC))

R|CAT does not fulfill the following criteria: LGBT Owned Business (CPUC), Disabled Veteran Business (DGS), The Historically Underutilized Business Zones (HUBZone) (SBA), and Service Disabled Veteran Owned (SBA).

Following this post is a series of blog posts about certifying entities and their certification criteria.

What certification(s) does your business maintain? What tips do you have for completing the certification process?

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4 thoughts on “Supplier Diversity Certification – Overview

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