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Andre Gudger: Increased Opportunities to Elevate Small-Business Contracting

Andre Gudger

The Defense Department has exceeded its goal on the number of small-company contracts awarded, a milestone the agency intends to top with several initiatives lined up to help enable small employers in the future, the Washington Post reported Monday.

J.D. Harrison writes that small company participation has increased since 2011, when Andre Gudger assumed the role of director of the Office of Small Business Programs.

“I came in looking to increase opportunities not merely for one industry or socioeconomic category, but for all small businesses,” Gudger said in an interview for the Post.

According to the publication, small employers have been awarded more than $50 billion worth of projects in the past 12 months, compared to previous years that have shown a decline in small company involvement in DoD awards.

Besides building industry awareness on the role the segment plays, Gudger noted that successes could also be attributed to the prudence and resiliency such businesses represent, especially in a tight fiscal climate.

“I think we all realize that if you want to get things done and create jobs, especially right now when we’re in a downward spiral in terms of federal spending, you turn to companies that have shown they can be smart about how they spend money, companies that have found ways to do more with less. Often, those are small businesses,” Gudger told the Post.

He said that the office plans to set up an even more competitive environment through the Small Business Innovation Research and other programs to further elevate small-business contracting.

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