State Department of General Services launches Mentor-Protégé Program

© Shutterstock

The Department of General Services (DGS) recently launched the Mentor-Protégé Program (MPP), a program that will help small businesses, small diverse businesses, and veteran business enterprises compete for more contracting opportunities.

The biggest hurdles small businesses face while attempting to participate in contracting opportunities are operational capacity, resources, and knowledge. The program pairs contractors with business owners to help the entrepreneurs improve their business management and contract bidding skills.

The inaugural cohort includes twelve protégés and six mentors who will collaborate for a year.

“Pursuing state contracts might seem daunting for a small business, so having someone who can help — especially another business that knows how to navigate the whole process — will be enormously beneficial,” Lieutenant Governor Austin Davis said.

DGS’ Bureau of Diversity, Inclusion, and Small Business Opportunities (BDISBO) developed and manages the program. It chose the mentor and protégé pairings, and monitors pairing activities.

BDISBO chose mentors who have had contracts with Pennsylvania valued at $300,000 or more during the past three years and are in good standing.

Protégés received invitations and were required to answer basic business operational questions and participate in online training.

Both mentor and protégé firms must be registered suppliers in good standing with the state.