Q&A: BCD Travel’s partnerships with small businesses

BCD Travel’s partnerships with small businesses are increasingly important to U.S. government clients, but they’re not new for BCD. The travel management company has a long-standing practice of partnering with smaller TMCs.

Q: How does BCD support government clients’ small business inclusion goals?

A: BCD supports clients’ missions to maximize opportunities for small businesses and is committed to inclusion. That was a factor in BCD’s recent win of the U.S. Army CONUS (contiguous U.S.) contract, in that it fulfilled the government’s small business set-aside (SBSA) goals. As a prime contractor, BCD commits to service level agreements that include small businesses as subcontractors.

Q: How does BCD ensure consistent service when contracts include subcontractors?

A: BCD’s SBSA partners are held to stringent quality requirements and obligated to align with BCD’s corporate structure and methods, regardless of a partner’s ownership structure. BCD management committees provide oversight of and guidance to partner TMCs. Resources provided to subcontractors include technology, fulfillment support and back-office reporting, as well as access to BCD’s global hotel program with pre-negotiated rates.

Additionally, BCD has a Small Business Advocacy Group that monitors performance against government requirements and goals. The group is composed of executive-level leadership from BCD and small business partners. Members establish mutually defined operational protocols, promote cross-company coaching, conduct quarterly reviews and share best practices.

Q: Which small businesses categories do BCD partners represent?

A: Certified categories include, but are not limited to, service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB); woman-owned small business (WOSB); and businesses operating in historically underutilized business zones, designated as HUBZones by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Q: Introduce us to one of BCD’s small business partners.

A: BCD has a special relationship with Integrated Solutions & Services. The small business TMC is a 15-year BCD partner. ISS is located in a historically underutilized business zone, or HUBZone, in Knoxville, Tennessee. BCD works with ISS not only to serve U.S. Army travelers, but also to provide travel services for a division of the U.S. Navy and, separately, for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. By partnering with ISS, BCD contributes to improving the Department of Defense’s performance on its Small Business Procurement Scorecard, particularly related to HUBZones.

Q: What’s different about the BCD-ISS relationship?

A: In 2020, BCD elevated its partnership with ISS through the All Small Mentor-Protégé Program. The program was established by the Small Business Administration to assist qualified companies in obtaining certifications that position them to win U.S. government business. ISS is one of only two TMCs in the program, and BCD is proud to serve as ISS’ mentor.

To learn more about BCD Travel’s specialized offerings for government clients, go to bcdtravel.com/gov.

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