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Small Business Vendor Outreach Sessions

Sponsored by the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization, Vendor Outreach Sessions (VOS's) are a series of pre-arranged 15-minute appointments with Small Business Specialists from DHS components, plus several prime contractors who currently have contracts with DHS. These sessions provide the small business community opportunities to discuss their capabilities and to learn more about doing business with DHS. We maintain a listing of scheduled Vendor Outreach Sessions that includes the dates companies may schedule appointments for specific sessions.

Vendor Outreach Sessions (VOS) are held ten times per year in the following months: January, February, March, May, June, July, August, October, November and December. Please visit the following Vendor outreach Sessions link to access the calendar for the upcoming sessions:

Review the notes section for each session, which indicates what type of small business is eligible to attend each month, along with the scheduling date for each session.

Please read all information on this page carefully before scheduling appointments. If you require additional information, please contact us regarding Vendor Outreach Sessions at osdbu.vos@hq.dhs.gov.

Additional Details

Scheduled participants from DHS include representatives from DHS Headquarters Office of Procurement Operations (OPO), Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Federal Law Enforcement Training Center (FLETC), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Transportation Security Administration (TSA), U.S. Coast Guard (USCG), U.S. Secret Service (USSS) and the Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR).

Additionally, several large business prime contractors will be on hand to discuss subcontracting opportunities, as well as mentor-protégé relationships.

Scheduling a Vendor Outreach Session

All requests for appointments are handled via an electronic appointment scheduling system at https://vos.mybusinessmatches.com (If this link does not take you to the scheduling site, copy and paste it into your browser’s address bar). You must first create a profile in the system.

The appointment scheduling opens at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST) on the designated day and will remain open for a 24-hour period. Scheduling will close at 12:00 p.m. EST on the next work day. The system is timed to the clock at the Naval Observatory. Be advised that appointments fill very quickly (generally within minutes after the scheduling system opens). You will be competing with other vendors accessing the system simultaneously via the Internet.

In the scheduling system, you will be able to select appointment times with specific DHS components and/or large prime contractors. You may request up to three appointments. If you successfully make an appointment, the confirmation is set as soon as you click on the schedule button. You will receive a pop-up header that says Your Meeting is Confirmed. No additional e-mail is sent at this time. You can further confirm that you have successfully scheduled appointments by reviewing your user dashboard in the section entitled My Schedule with options to either See My Schedule or Print My Schedule. To expedite check-in when the in-house VOS resumes, recommend that you bring your printed schedule with you. If you do not receive a header that says Your Meeting is Confirmed, or if you are unable to see scheduled appointments when you click on My Schedule, you do not have an appointment.

To schedule appointments follow these steps:

  1. Create a profile in the electronic appointment scheduling system at https://vos.mybusinessmatches.com. The profile can be created any time prior to scheduling. It is recommended to create this profile prior to the day of scheduling.
  2. Once you have completed the profile, review the list of counselors (component Small Business Specialists and Large primes) at https://vos.mybusinessmatches.com/#monthlyresearch and determine which counselors you wish to meet with for further information.
  3. At the designated day and time for scheduling appointments, log into the DHS VOS Electronic Scheduling System at https://vos.mybusinessmatches.com with the email and password that you used at the time the profile was created; click on the red button titled Schedule Appointments; select appointment times with DHS Components and Large Primes for that specific VOS.

Attendance Policy

The VOS is a DHS best practice and a well sought-after industry event. To increase opportunities for more vendors to attend the sessions, DHS will limit vendor attendance to no more than 3 sessions per fiscal year. The scheduling site will automatically suspend a vendor’s ability to register for future sessions once the company has completed its third session.

No Show Policy

The DHS VOS has a wide-reaching interest to the vendor community. Vendors who do not attend their scheduled session take away from another company’s opportunity to attend the session. Therefore, DHS will suspend vendor access to scheduling appointments after two no shows. Based on a firm’s no-show status, the company will not be able to attend two consecutive vendor outreach sessions that they would previously be eligible to attend.

Vendors must provide the proper cancellation notice either via the My Business Matches (MBM) scheduling site or at OSDBU.VOS@hq.dhs.gov within 24hrs of the VOS, otherwise they are considered a no show. If the vendor cancels via MBM, an automatic email notification of the date and time of the cancellation is sent to the VOS program manager.

Location and Important Logistics for Vendor Outreach Sessions

Virtual VOS

Due to the on-set of COVID-19, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU), will conduct virtual Vendor Outreach Sessions (VOS) until further notice. Vendors who wish to participate must provide a valid email address in their profile in MBM that can be used with the various virtual tools (i.e. Zoom, Microsoft Teams, etc.). The preferred virtual tool for DHS is MS teams. At a minimum, vendors should have access to MS Teams. The prime contractors use a wider selection of virtual tool options. Once your firm receives confirmation of an appointment from the scheduling site, you will receive a follow-up email with the virtual meeting invitation. See the following link for the FY 2021 VOS schedule /publication/small-business. Please be advised that if connectivity issues occur using the virtual tools, the session will be conducted telephonically. If you have any questions regarding these virtual VOS events, send them to the VOS mailbox at OSDBU.VOS@hq.dhs.gov.

Cancellation Policy

In the event the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) issues the Federal Government a delayed opening of 2 hours (or more) or closed in the Washington, D.C. Metropolitan area, the virtual VOS existing appointments will be re-scheduled in accordance with the availabil­ity of the Small Business Specialist. In the case of in-house sessions, the VOS will be cancelled. On the morning of the event, please visit www.opm.gov for more information.

Tips for a Successful Vendor Outreach Session

Visit beta.SAM.gov for a current list of requirements valued at $25,000 or more.

 

Last Published Date: September 23, 2020

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