Georgia defines a small business as one which is independently owned and operated and must have either fewer than 300 employees or less than $30 million in gross receipts per year. Georgia does not have a Small Business Enterprise (SBE) designation or certification requirement. Companies may ‘self-report’ to designate themselves as a small business through the GA Department of Administrative Services (DOAS) through the Supplier Registration / Team Georgia Marketplace where you can select your organization’s classifications.

The only certification by the State of Georgia is for a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) and that certification is performed by the GA Department of Transportation (GDOT). GDOT can also process a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) certification once the DBE certification is approved and proper criteria are met. Once the criteria is met, the MBE application is then sent to DOAS who will approve the MBE certification.

As you can see, certifying your company for minority certification requires a collaborative effort between DOAS and GDOT. Companies desiring to certify as a “minority business enterprise” or a “minority subcontractor” may do so by submitting an application to the GDOT. The GDOT Certification Application captures the required data used by DOAS. This eliminates duplication of effort for suppliers and provides greater exposure of certified minority companies to state and local procurement officials and private sector suppliers. Click here to learn more information about company certification.

You may also certify your company through the following organizations:

Federal Government
The federal government sets aside certain contract bid opportunities exclusively for small businesses. In order to compete for these contracts, you must first register as a vendor with the government. As part of the registration process, you will be required to enter information about your company in the System for Award Management (SAM) database where you may self-certify as a small business.The federal government also has programs that help small businesses owned, operated and actively managed by women, minority group members, veterans or persons with disabilities compete in the marketplace.You can find federal government contract certifications here that include Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) 8(a) program, HUBZone Empowerment Contracting and Certification, Woman-Owned Business Certification, Veteran-Owned Small Business, and Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business.
Small Business Enterprise (SBE)
To certify as a Small Business Enterprise (SBE) for federal contracting purposes, the federal government sets aside certain contract bid opportunities exclusively for small businesses. In order to compete for these contracts, you must first register as a vendor with the government.
Greater Women’s Business Council (GWBC)
The Greater Women’s Business Council (GWBC), for women business owners interested in promoting, developing and maintaining business relationships with major corporations, governmental agencies and other women business owners.
Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council
Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council (GMSDC), a corporate member-based organization to foster and expand economic opportunities between Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs), corporations and government entities within Georgia.
Georgia Department of Transporation (GDOT)
Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT), you must certify with GDOT in order to do business with them and to certify as a DBE (disadvantaged business enterprise).
National Women Business Owners Corporation
The National Women Business Owners Corporation provides a national certification program for women owned businesses.
Women’s Business Enterprise National Council
The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council is the nation’s leading advocate of women-owned businesses as suppliers to America’s corporations and is the largest third-party certifier of women owned businesses.


How do I become a registered vendor with the state of Georgia?
Visit the Georgia Department of Administrative Services (DOAS) online or call 404-657-6000.

Do I need to register my company with the state of Georgia even if I am not a vendor
Depending upon your legal structure (incorporation, LLC, S, etc.), you will have to register with the state at http://www.sos.ga.gov/corporations/.

Mary Ellen McClanahan

Mary Ellen McClanahan



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