Is It Just Us?

We keep wondering how the work from home (WFH) model has impacted other  SDMWVLGBTQBEs (Small Disadvantaged or Disabled, Minority, Women, Veteran, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans-gendered or Queer Business Enterprises). It seems overwhelming some days, just how much more work we seem to be doing remotely. And meeting fatigue, OMG! Someone suggested the other day not to schedule hour long meetings because we all seem to get wrangled into back-to-back Zooms, Teams, Go2s or webexs missing lunch and postponing bathroom breaks. Instead, start making them 30 to 45 minutes in length, giving ourselves a built in break.

On another note, we recently did something different. We were invited to talk about how to get certified on Rob Oliver’s podcast. If you are looking for general information on getting certified, in an audio format, please give it a listen.

In other certification news, something interesting happened with the SBA’s 8(a) program. While, technically, 8(a) isn’t a certification is has very similar criteria to state programs for disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE) programs under US Department of Transportation (DOT) guidelines. This business development program is focused on growing your business through federal contracts. If you’re uncertain about 8(a) and whether you should consider applying, we wrote Is an 8(a) Certification Right for Your Company back in 2010. The program also offers mentoring, educational and loan opportunities.

So, what changed? Two things. As of 15 July 2020, a business owner’s net worth can not exceed $750,000. The SBA will presume that if a business owner’s adjusted gross income averaged over the three preceding years exceeds $350,000, s/he is not economically disadvantaged. Remember, this number excludes the value of the person’s primary residence and qualified retirement program. Other programs may also exclude the value of the owner’s business. But, you will not be considered economically disadvantaged if the fair market value of all your assets, including primary residence and the value of the business exceeds $6 million.

Calculating your business’s size standard based on sales receipts also changed. Starting in January 2020, the SBA will institute a 5-year average instead of 3-year sales revenue average.  During the transition period beginning January 6, 2020 and running through January 6, 2022, companies may choose which average to use.