Business Diversity Advisory Group

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Background

Supporting small and minority-, women-, and veteran-owned businesses is a priority for Enterprise Services and for Washington State.

Successful small businesses led by minorities, women and veterans help make our economy and families more resilient — strengthening our communities and improving quality of life. Utilization of small and diverse businesses also is important to help drive innovation that benefits all Washingtonians.

Enterprise Services oversees state purchasing policy for goods and services, including managing statewide master contracts used by state agencies and local governments.

Enterprise Services has a major role in how the state moves forward to include small and diverse businesses in procurement processes. State agencies, higher education and local governmental entities (political subdivisions) all have procurement staff who rely on Enterprise Services for contracting services, guidance, consistent processes, leadership, and support.  

Advisory Group

As Enterprise Services works on many changes to improve utilization of small and diverse businesses, we want small and diverse businesses to be part of the processes and let us know what is most important to them. The Enterprise Services Business Diversity Advisory Group (BDAG) is made up of small, minority-, women-, and veteran-owned businesses as well as non-profits for the blind that serve in an advisory capacity to the agency's contracts and procurement division.

The BDAG meets monthly. The group:

  • Shares ideas with Enterprise Services on how we can better include small and diverse businesses.
  • Provides advice to key decision makers on how we might encourage more small and diverse businesses to participate in state contracting and procurement opportunities.
  • Learns about how Enterprise Services is utilizing suggestions to further small and diverse business inclusion.
  • Provides important guidance to help improve small and diverse business inclusion for master contracts, impacting over $1.7 billion in spending annually.

Business Diversity Advisory Group (BDAG) Member Requirements

  • Be a Washington small business registered in Washington's Electronic Business Solution (WEBS), a non-profit for the blind and based in Washington, or a non-profit organization that supports these entities.
  • Provide goods or services that are purchased by Enterprise Services or under a master contract.
  • Actively trying to do business with Enterprise Services or currently doing business with the agency.
  • Have not been de-certified for reasons other than non-renewal/response or graduation.
  • Have not been debarred or suspended, have no labor violations, and have no ethics violations.
  • Provide community and work references.

Note: Enterprise Services welcomes advocacy. Bid protests, complaints against the agency, or other activities intended to further Enterprise Services accountability, transparency, and inclusion are rights the agency supports and will not negatively impact a member's evaluation to be part of the group.

Selection Process

Candidates serve one- to three-year terms and are selected using a transparent process overseen by the Enterprise Services Contracts Division. Each year, member applications are due no later than Nov. 30.

Enterprise Services seeks a balanced representation of geographic areas, race/ethnicity, gender, veteran status, experience in doing business with the state, small business size, sector and industry and other factors.

For more information, contact Erin Lopez at (360) 407-8010 or Erin.Lopez@des.wa.gov.