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Business Development and Outreach

Business Development and Outreach Services Division

The Business Development and Outreach Services (BDOS) Division of the Virginia Department of Small Business and Supplier Diversity is the economic development arm of the SBSD.  BDOS is often the first point of contact for small businesses interested growing their business by obtaining more information for the Virginia Small Business Financing Authority or learning the marketing advantages of the Commonwealth of Virginia’s certification as a SWaM (Small, Woman-owned, or Minority-owned) business.   Our mission is to provide resources that will enable small business in Virginia to grow create jobs and strengthen Virginia’s economy.

The BDOS team is geographically dispersed through the Commonwealth, provides an array of valuable workshops, seminars, classes.  The events are often planned in coordination with subject-matter experts throughout the Commonwealth on a variety of topics designed to enhance the forward-mobility of small business growth.  Some of the events offered include, but are not limited to:

Entrepreneur Express:   This is a half-day workshop targeting individuals researching a business start-up or small business owners who have been in business less than three years.  Some of the topics covered are business plans; marketing your business; financing your business and an invaluable overview of additional government resources available to small businesses.

Selling to the Commonwealth:  This is most often a three-hour workshop with an overview of the Commonwealth’s electronic procurement system, electronic Virginia, or eVA.  Key in this session is a demonstration on finding a targeted market for a specific commodity or service; which agencies most often purchase that commodity/service and the dollars historically spent in those categories.  In addition, key information on the Commonwealth’s SWaM certification is offered with an overview of the marketing advantage of the SWaM certification and steps needed to apply and request verification of credentials for the certifications.

Selling to the Commonwealth Computer Labs:  These sessions are hands-on in a computer lab for small business owners to work through their own individual eVA registration and research on finding a targeted market within the Commonwealth of Virginia e-procurement system.

Regional Connect Events:  These events are a prime networking opportunity for state buyers and small businesses to have one-on-one conversations about what the buyers are purchasing and how best to navigate this process.  These events are intended to be limited in size to allow for the one-on-one meaningful conversations.  Generally four events are held each year and are held throughout the state.

Growing Sales Conferences: These are half-day events targeting a more mature small business audience.  These events offer three time slots for workshops and each time slot offers anywhere from 3-5 different topics. By event’s end, each business owners will have attended 3 workshops out of 12-15.  In addition, there are key business resources who exhibit as added benefit for small businesses.

One-on-One Business Counseling: Another vital service provided by the BDOS team is the one-on-one business counseling sessions.  Through a local Business Services Manager, small businesses are able to set up a one-on-one appointment to go over the individual business growth plan.

WORKSHOPS ON ADDITIONAL TOPICS:   Additional workshops are offered on small business topics determined by the local market demand.

The BDOS team connects to the small businesses, government procurement officials and the economic development community throughout Virginia as well as other resources vital to small business owners.

Business One Stop helps entrepreneurs determine the new business formation requirements for their specific business. This electronic portal accelerates new business formation by minimizing confusing processes and duplicate paperwork.

Virginia Business Information Center handles contacts with business owners by phone, email and live chat.

Email: vbic@sbsd.virginia.gov or call the Hotline:804-371-0438.