Supplier Diversity Encouragement Program Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
1. How does BPS define a diverse vendor?
Certification as one of the following:
- Minority Business Enterprise (MBE)
- Women Owned Business Enterprise (WBE)
- Veteran Owned Business Enterprise (VBE)
Below are general qualifications for certification as a diverse business, however, specific requirements may vary by certifying agency:
- Be 51 percent owned and managed by a minority, women, or veteran who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien.
2. What is Certification?
Certification is a procedure to ensure that businesses claiming to be minority-, women- or veteran-owned and controlled meet the legal qualifications. BPS does not certify suppliers. Below is a list of recognized certifications.
- State of Florida Office of Supplier Diversity
- Florida State Minority Supplier Development Council (FSMSDC)
- National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC)
- Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC)
- Department of Veteran Affairs
3. Does BPS certify minority, women, and veteran businesses?
BPS does not maintain its own certification program for minority, women, and veteran businesses. There are several certification programs nationally and in Florida. Please refer to section 2 for recognized certifications.
4. Does certification ensure business with BPS?
Certification is a tool, not a guarantee. Certification may enhance your business’s visibility among agencies, prime contractors, and the business community. To be successful, a business should competitively market itself, its people, and its services.
5. Do MBE, WBE, or VBE businesses receive an advantage on procurement opportunities?
This is an encouragement program, not a preference program.
6. What does this mean for current vendors?
Current vendors who are certified as an MBE, WBE, or VBE, are encouraged to provide a copy of their certification to Procurement so that their status can be logged in the database. This can be completed through the Supplier Diversity Program Request Form. Current vendors who do not qualify for certification do not need to take any action. However, current vendors are encouraged to provide opportunities to diverse suppliers through partnerships, joint ventures, subcontracts, and other contractual opportunities.