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8(a) Program Digital Service Initiative

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), in collaboration with the U.S. Digital Service, offers a tool available for use by Federal Contracting Officers to quickly procure digital services. This helps agencies bring cultural change by implementing Digital Service Playbook and TechFAR strategies with lowered risk, trying out modern technology stacks, and beginning iterative development with little procurement lead time.

Goals of the Initiative

The initiative gives agencies the ability to:

  1. Give a clear, easy, and fast path to agencies to start digital services projects
  2. Entice non-traditional vendors into the Government space through the 8(a) program
  3. Increase the number of contracts awarded to quality digital service providers
  4. Reduce administration for the SBA and agencies by providing an easy on-ramp to and release from the 8(a) program for projects within scope

Small Business Administration Memo

Outlines the guidance provided to Chief Acquisition Officers and Small Business Program Office Directors regarding the initiative.

Download SBA Memo

Initiative Summaries

Summary documents that help agencies understand what the program is. It gives a summary of the key characteristics of the initiative. It also offers a checklist that helps programs determine if this initiative is a good fit for their needs.

Download brief one-pager

Download detailed one-pager

Guide: How to use an 8(a) company for your digital service needs

Tells you how to use the USDS-SBA initiative to increase use of small business for digital projects, help shrink the long procurement lead-times and implementation bottle-necks, while allowing agencies the flexibility to scale work with companies who are not participating in the SBA program.

Read more

Statement of Objectives Examples

The scope of work under which this initiative is limited to three Statements of Objectives (SOO). Samples of each are listed below in order of maturity of modern technology understanding and implementation, from the less mature (Learn the Process) to more mature (Digital MVP). The SOO’s can be used independently yet they also build upon one another. The SOO’s can also be combined and included in one Request for Quote/Proposal.

SOO: Learn the Process

Culture change, practical application, and retrospective. This is for agencies with very little education and experience with implementing iterative and design approaches; such as agile software development or lean design.

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SOO: Select the Tech

Alternatives analysis, demonstration, and retrospective. This is for agencies that who are looking to move to modern technology stacks, platforms, or solutions but want hands-on guidance through the process of determining which works best in their agency environment.

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SOO: Build the MVP

Discovery and design, develop MVP, retrospective. This is for agencies with stakeholders that have a working level of understanding of User Experience (UX) design thinking and/or agile software development. This effort allows for the design, development and release of a Digital Minimum Viable Product to solve an agency need or problem.

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