Being in the trucking business means that you should aim towards getting contracts on a regular basis if indeed you want to stay in business.
There are different levels of competition in the trucking industry especially as it relates to getting trucking contracts, and there are areas you can concentrate on so as to minimize the competition you have to face.
One of the areas you can concentrate on getting trucking contracts in the United States is the military. Yes, the military in the United States of America is known to give some of their trucking contracts to private (civilian) trucking companies.
Securing military trucking contracts involves navigating a competitive procurement process and meeting specific requirements. Having said that, here are the steps you should follow if you want to get military contracts successfully.
Steps to Get Military Trucking Contracts Successfully
Step One: Business Registration and Compliance
If you looking forward to getting military contracts successfully, the first step you are expected to take to achieve this is to get your business registered and ensure compliance.
The truth is that the military will not award you any trucking contract if your business is not properly registered or complies with all legal requirements, including not obtaining any certifications needed for government contracting.
Step Two: Register in SAM (System for Award Management)
To do this is simple and straightforward. All you need to do is to create an account on the SAM website (sam.gov). The SAM website (sam.gov) is the primary database used by the U.S. government for contractor registration.
After you have successfully created your account, you will be required to complete your profile with accurate and up-to-date information.
The information you provide will be verified hence you must make sure you supply only accurate and true information about you and your business.
Step Three: Obtain the D-U-N-S Number
Without a Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S number, you will not be considered for a military trucking contract because it is often a prerequisite for government contracts.
The reason why a Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S number is mandatory is because it serves as a unique identifier that helps the government assess your business’s creditworthiness.
Step Four: Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code
You can obtain your Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code through the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA). Note that the Commercial and Government Entity (CAGE) Code is very important when it comes to dealing with the military as a contractor because the code is used to identify your business in government systems.
Step Five: Research and Networking
Once you are done with ensuring compliance and getting the required coeds, the next step you should take is to start researching and networking with key stakeholders in the military who are capable of giving your trucking contracts or recommending you for a military contract.
So, you must make sure you identify military agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), that regularly contract for trucking services. Attend industry events, network with procurement officers, and establish relationships with key decision-makers.
Step Six: Understand Contracting Requirements
You should familiarize yourself with the specific requirements for military trucking contracts. Some of the areas where you can work towards having an understanding are in the area of compliance with security regulations, safety standards, and any specialized equipment or certifications.
You should understand and comply with the Defense Transportation Regulation (DTR) and any other regulations specific to military transportation. This includes knowledge of security clearance requirements for drivers and adherence to military convoy procedures.
Step Seven: Capability Statement
Develop a comprehensive capability statement that highlights your company’s qualifications, experience, and capabilities relevant to military trucking contracts.
Don’t forget that your capability statement must emphasize your commitment to maintaining high-quality service and meeting safety standards. This is important because compliance with industry-specific safety protocols is key for military contracts.
Trust me, your capability statement is a very important document that you can use for marketing your business to government agencies.
Step Eight: Identify Opportunities
This is very important because such opportunities will hardly come to you, you must go out for them. You must make it a point of duty to monitor government procurement portals, such as beta.sam.gov.
This is where military trucking contracts are posted. In other to stay ahead of other competitors, you should endeavor to set up alerts for relevant opportunities and stay informed about upcoming military trucking contract solicitations.
Step Nine: Pre-Qualification
While you are keeping your eyes on openings for military trucking contracts, you must make sure you also stay ready by working towards meeting pre-qualification requirements.
This is important because some military trucking contracts may require pre-qualification. The bottom line is to make sure your trucking company meets the necessary criteria and provide any requested documentation to establish your eligibility.
Step Ten: Submit Bids and Proposals
You must make sure you prepare and submit competitive bids or proposals for relevant military trucking contracts. Of course, there may be several trucking companies bidding for very few military trucking contracts hence you must make sure you follow the submission guidelines and deadlines carefully.
You must make sure your bids and proposals highlight your business’s performance track record, emphasizing successful past contracts, on-time deliveries, and adherence to safety and security protocols. This is very important if indeed you want to get a military trucking contract successfully.
Note that once you are able to secure your first military trucking contract, your ability to deliver as promised will be your ticket for securing subsequent contracts from the military hence you must make sure you do all it takes to under-promise and over-deliver.