It is the policy of the University of California, consistent with State and Federal Law, to optimize opportunities for business contracting with small business enterprises, and to give all responsive, responsible vendors a fair and equal opportunity to compete for campus business. The Small Business Act was created to help small and disadvantaged businesses compete in the marketplace. It also helps these companies gain access to federal and private procurement markets.
Economically and Socially Responsible Spend Goal
In 2018, the University of California set a goal of achieving 25% utilization of Economically and Socially Responsible (EaSR) suppliers within 5 years. EaSR suppliers are defined as those holding a current government or nationally recognized certification that identifies suppliers that may have a positive impact on society and/or the economy. More information about the UC's Economically and Socially Responsible spend goals can be found in the UC Sustainable Procurement Guidelines.
Small Business First
California Public Contract Code Section 10508.5 allows the UC to award a Purchase Agreement to a certified small business up to $250,000 without being competitively bid, so long as the UC obtains price quotations from two or more certified small businesses.
UC policy BUS-43 requires that all non-construction and non-federally funded purchases valued between $10,000 and $250,000 annually (excluding tax, but including shipping) be awarded to a certified Small Business (SB) or Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise (DVBE). For all requisitions within this threshold, departments must attach a screenshot of the supplier certification and select the appropriate SB First dropdown on their Requisition. For more information, review the UCOP Small Business First Website.
For purchases of goods and/or services valued between:
- $10,000 - $100,000 annually: one (1) quote must be obtained from either a certified Small Businesses, Microbusiness or Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise.
- $100,000 - $250,000 annually: at least two (2) quotes must be obtained from certified Small Businesses, Microbusinesses or Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises.
UCSB SB First Quick Reference Guide for Departments (08/2023)
UCSB SB First Waiver (08/2023)
UCSB SB First Waiver Guidance (08/2023)
Searching for Certified Small or Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises
Business certifications can be searched and verified using any database below, however it is recommended to use the Supplier.io EXPLORER Database as it pulls certification data from all other councils.
1. Explorer Professional (supplier.io)
UC has partnered with Supplier.io for supplier diversity data enrichment and access to their Explorer Professional platform. This online platform uses Single Sign On to allow UC employees access to search hundreds of councils and agencies nationwide that offer small and diverse business certifications. Training resources are available on the UCOP webpage.
2. Cal eProcure (caleprocure.ca.gov)
Cal eProcure is California's online marketplace portal designed to allow businesses to sell products and/or services to the State. The portal provides search functionality to identify SB/DVBEs that are certified by the State of California. Training resources are available on the UCOP webpage.
3. SAM (SAM.gov)
System for Award Management (SAM.gov) is a US government website that provides options for searching for federally-certified small and diverse businesses. A user account is required before searching for entity (business) registrations. Training resources are available on the UCOP webpage.
Federal Small Business Subcontracting
If you are a department and have a federally funded contract in excess of $700k, you may be required to submit and operate under a Small Business Subcontracting Plan. See the Small Business Subcontracting Plan tab for more details.
Small Business Suppliers
A small business concern depending on the industry, size standard eligibility is based on the average number of employees for the preceding twelve months or on sales volume averaged over a three-year period. The SBA has established a table of size standards matched to North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) industries.
A small business concern that is at least 51 percent owned by one or more individuals who are both socially and economically disadvantaged. This can include a publicly owned business that has at least 51 percent of its stock unconditionally owned by one or more socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and whose management and daily business is controlled by one or more such individuals.
A small business concern that is at least 51 percent owned by one or more veterans or service-disabled veterans. This can include a publicly owned business that has at least 51 percent of its stock unconditionally owned by veterans or service-disabled veterans and whose management and daily business is controlled by one or more such individuals.
A small business concern that is at least 51 percent owned by one or more women. This can include a publicly owned business that has at least 51 percent of its stock unconditionally owned by one or more such individuals and whose management and daily business is controlled by one or more women.
A small business concern which operates in Historically Underutilized Business Zones. HUB (Historically Underutilized Business) contracting programs, a business must be determined to be a "qualified HUBzone small business concern". A firm can be qualified if:
- It is small,
- It is located in an "historically underutilized business zone" (HUB Zone)
- It is owned and controlled by one or more US Citizens, and
- At least 35% of its employees reside in a HUBZone.
A minority-owned business is a for-profit enterprise, regardless of size, physically located in the United States or its trust territories, which is owned, operated and controlled by minority group members. "Minority group members" are United States citizens who are Asian, Black, Hispanic and Native American.
Ownership by minority individuals means the business is at least 51% owned by such individuals or, in the case of a publicly-owned business, at least 51% of the stock is owned by one or more such individuals. Further, the management and daily operations are controlled by those minority group members.