The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) enables Veterans to gain access to economic opportunity by leveraging the federal procurement system and expanding participation of procurement-ready VOSBs and Small Businesses.
One-way OSDBU fulfills this mission is assisting small businesses to gain access through participation in curated Direct Access Program (DAP) events scheduled throughout the year. DAP events bring together Procurement Decision Makers (PDMs) from the VA, other Federal agencies and the private sector who want to do business with mission-capable Veteran, Women-Owned and Small Businesses that are able to provide the products and services they need.
Each DAP Event includes a mix of activities geared to maximize stakeholders Return on Investment. Activities such as Business Opportunity Sessions (BOS); a 45 minutes activity where key staff responsible for the program’s requirements present first-person perspective and insights, historical experience and challenges they have faced in filling the need, and the real-world solutions they seek from companies best positioned to meet it and Networking RoundTables Sessions; an activity in which a system matched buyer(PDM) and up to 3 sellers meet in a 20 minute session to present their companies capabilities, approach and solutions to the challenges outlined during the BOS session are prime components of a DAP event.
Each DAP Event has been carefully developed to promote opportunities for growth. You will engage directly with targeted and matched VA, other Federal agencies and commercial PDMs in a setting conducive to building business relationships;
- Learn about opportunities specific to your industry directly from the Program Managers and Acquisition Staff responsible for the procurement;
- Participate in a myriad of activities developed specifically to connect you with the right people.
- Network with like-minded businesses owners and staff to discover subcontracting and teaming opportunities.
- Conduct market research to position your business effectively.
Types of DAP Events:
DAP Events are offered throughout the year; at our headquarters in Washington, DC at VA facilities and other sites across the country as well as virtually.
- Business Engagement Center (BEC) Events: A BEC Event is usually half or one-day in length and held at the BEC, OSDBU’s fully equipped conference center, located at 801 I Street NW in Washington DC. Events at the BEC are ideal to accommodate smaller sessions with the capacity for 12-14 PDMs to conduct BOS sessions, Networking RoundTables and One-on-One sessions.
- National Veterans Small Business Engagement (NVSBE): The NVSBE is the VA’s premier event, the largest federal procurement event of its kind. This yearly, large-scale, multi-day event provides participants access to nationwide procurement opportunities through hundreds of tailored, scheduled activities. Communities of Interest, based on specific NAIC and product service codes, serving distinct stakeholders, are formed. Activities are kept together in the communities to facilitate maximum networking with relevant stakeholders. Other activities such as General Sessions and Town Halls provide important information relevant to all attendees. NVSBE offers market research opportunities through a sizeable Expo Showcase with vendors offering the latest innovations in products and services, networking receptions, lunches, extended breaks as well as Key Leader Roundtables and a robust Learning Agenda presented by the industry’s subject matter experts.
- Targeted Industry Event (TIE): This DAP event which focuses exclusively on one industry or COI is referred to as a “Targeted Industry Event”. DAP hosted its first TIE event in New Orleans in 2018 for the Construction and Facilities Management COI. Over 200 Facility Engineers and Project Managers from over 160 VA Medical Centers located across the nation connected and networked over 3 days with VOSB’s able to fulfill their critical needs.
- Regional Event: A DAP Regional Event focuses on the procurement opportunities for a specific area or facility such as a VISN or Central Office. A regional event can include procurement opportunities for single or multiple COIs and can be one or more days.
- Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) Event: A VAMC DAP Event is a one-day event which takes place inside a VA Medical Center or facility. While these events typically focus on medical supplies or services requirements they can also include construction opportunities for the facility where the event is being conducted. Participants have the unique opportunity to present and demonstrate a myriad of often innovative and cutting-edge products and conduct in-depth discussions directly to the on-site, end user.