“There are more than 10 million women-owned businesses in this country, but while women-owned businesses make up more than a third of the nation’s privately-held businesses, only 3.4 percent of women-owned firms generate $500,000 or more in annual revenues,” said Carla Harris, Chair of the National Women’s Business Council (NWBC). Carla Harris and the NWBC recently released a report that analyzed the corporate supplier diversity programs in the US and developed recommendation that can lead to the growth of women-owned businesses. The report was categorized into three parts which provide a glimpses of supplier diversity programs from the standpoint of supply and demand. Here are a list of the NWBC recommendations to encourage growth, and the success of women-owned businesses:

  1. Improve transparency about supplier diversity program offerings and contract requirements –Corporations that publicly share contracting expectations and supplier diversity program offerings, will improve efficiency in the contracting process, for both themselves and the diverse suppliers seeking contracts. Government can play a role in encouraging this increased transparency, including sharing best practices learned from federal procurement successes.
  2. Engage “growth scaffolding” opportunities, particularly for women-owned businesses – Corporations and suppliers benefit from interim “scale up” steps, such as Tier 2 contract opportunities. Government can encourage the “growth scaffolding” of women-owned businesses by developing and promoting capacity assessments for business owners and by publicly celebrating, along with encouraging, well-developed Tier 2 corporate supplier diversity programs.
  3. Increase corporations’ purchasing commitment to women owned businesses –Government can support the expansion of supplier diversity efforts towards women entrepreneurs by creating incentives to do more business, not only with small businesses in general, but with women owned businesses specifically.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can support supplier diversity programs and Tier II supplier diversity reporting, please visit – http://www.supportsupplierdiversity.com

Ray Hayes

Business Wire