“Government” doesn’t have to mean “complicated.”
Federal, state, and local governments are in various stages of creating smoother online experiences. Our focus is to create an intuitive marketplace where government customers, prime contractors, and small firms can easily transact business. We aim to reduce the burden and frustration small firms have found in accessing government contracts, which may be difficult at best. The government can spend less time outreach and meetings and do business with more qualified companies.
Welcome to e-GovMarket –– where we aim to make it happen.
Whether you are a small business looking to increase revenues by working with a large corporation, a large company looking for a small and medium-sized business (SMB) to work with, an agency with work overflows, or a visually impaired individual looking to get document remediation, we’re creating a one-of-a-kind hub to bring businesses, providers, and individuals together.
We’re incredibly proud to announce that e-GovMarket, a Small Business Administration (SBA)-certified small woman-owned business and a HUBZONE-certified business, is launching an online marketplace of professional services. Similar to ordering Uber (think “ready when you are” and “customized to your needs,” as well as “use us when you need us”), our users can upload documents and get instant pricing and tracking. Our business model is ideal for government micro-purchases and small business partners in our upcoming marketplace. Later, we’ll be talking about why and how these micro-purchases help small businesses, but we’ll save that for another post.
First –– let’s introduce you to the Founder and President of e-GovMarket: Tracye Turner.
Tracye Turner has an award-winning career in information technology (IT). Early on as an intrapreneur at Northrop Grumman IT, Ms. Turner led cutting-edge federal IT enterprise projects through the development of complex product integrations. Award-winning projects included:
- The U.S. Veterans Affairs’ first telemedicine pilot.
- The Smithsonian Institution’s interactive displays at the National Air and Space Museum.
- The security and management of the data and network systems for the 2000 Census Decennial.
She received several company President’s Circle awards and “Total Solutions Person of the Year.”
At Optimal Solutions Group, LLC, in College Park, Maryland, Ms. Turner is a member partner and started the company’s Entrepreneurship & Innovation Center, which houses the analytics and software, development groups. Having achieved CMMI Level 3 for software development and IT systems approvals, her teams have developed and integrated several commercial software products designed to enable a real-time framework in public policy. She also led and/or supported health, education, economic development, and international development projects. With her experience in IT, professional services, and federal business development, she saw an opportunity to develop a solution for a vexing problem –– how can a risk-averse government agency that wants to be innovative reach their goals of working with small firms and get the quality services they need?
Ms. Turner also volunteered on the University of Maryland’s Foundation Board of Trustees and the University System of Maryland’s Board of Regents, where she participated in technology and commercialization committees. She also has served on the State of Maryland E-Nnovation Initiative and Maryland Innovation Initiative. Most recently, Ms. Turner is on the iLead Council for the University of Maryland’s iSchool.
Q: When and how did you first realize that there was a need for this in the marketplace?
A: After over 20 years in federal business development, I noticed that the number of opportunities were decreasing for small firms while the contract dollar amounts were getting higher with the same firms getting selected. The agencies started to have more outreach/training and databases to register in, but the meetings were increasingly less productive for all involved. The SBA recently released to the public disaggregated numbers that reflected the experience we were having. Our firm is very qualified, mature, and innovative but could not win as much. We have successfully completed over 200 national and international projects (in over 24 countries); we have GSA Schedules, accounting approvals, CMMI appraisals, experienced staff, and solid past performance. Most importantly, we had new ideas, proven technologies, and methods to help make government and programs work better.
Q: Speaking to small business owners out there, what are a few of the specific ways that you see e-GovMarket as helping their business/revenue?
A: The time spent going to outreach events, networking, partnering, quoting, responding to status calls, invoicing, etc., all take away from the expertise and passion that small firms bring to the government, large firms, and/or the commercial sector. We provide the business opportunity directly to them. And if they are at capacity, we provide an opportunity for them to get a referral fee as a partner or bona fide agent back to the marketplace.
Q: What are some of the new standards for federal agencies and how does e-GovMarket help meet those needs?
A: The 21st Century Integrated Digital Experience Act (IDEA) (Public Law 115-336) or the recent Executive Order (December 13, 2021) on Transforming Federal Customer Experience and Service Delivery to Rebuild Trust in Government are both aligned with digital transformation, smoother equity (whether socioeconomic or geographic), and accessibility. These are all examples of new standards that e-GovMarket can provide solutions for.
Q: How has the fluctuating economy, as we emerge from a pandemic with staff and supply shortages, affected e-GovMarket? How can e-GovMarket be part of the solution?
A: Experts are pondering the future of work, and for many types of jobs, remote work seems viable for the near and distant future. Predicting and paying travel is also a challenge that creates fewer opportunities for small firms to continue and/or start new procurement relationships. Both challenges are opportunities for e-GovMarket in that buyers can efficiently obtain professional services whether through micro-purchases or establishing blanket ordering agreements. In the near term, we are offering professional services like editing, translation, and Section 508 remediation. Later this month, we plan to introduce our small business marketplace and then more services such as transcription, Braille packets, data preparation, literature reviews, grant reviews, and other types of commonly purchased services.
Q: You’ve been recertified as a third-party certified woman-owned small business. How does that make you feel, and what would you say to other young women that dream of running their own business one day?
A: I have two daughters and a son. They all have or are running small businesses. I am hoping that my husband and I have provided some of that foundation to them. I do want to see more woman-owned businesses succeed because we would be leaving half of our economy on the table otherwise. As a mom, I know we have unique struggles, and I’ve got a ton of mom stories to tell over the years. I am really surprised that woman-owned firms receive so little in venture capital funding (3%) and not a larger share of government and commercial business because we are many times the impetus and the glue for many successful ventures. Quite honestly, if I had not been an intrapreneur and later an entrepreneur, being a mom while helping to save for my kids’ college education would have been much more difficult. So what I am saying is that entrepreneurship can be overwhelming at times and the risks higher for women because we want to make sure our kids are taken care of, and we tend to have less economic security. But, if you can add value as an employee to the bottom line of a company, that leads to better job security and confidence you can do it on your own as an entrepreneur if that’s a path you want to pursue.
Q: When you’re not working (it looks like you have your hands full!), what do you like to do with your spare time?
A: First, I love product development and finding solutions. So that is my hobby. But I also volunteer on boards where I can explore other challenges to help find solutions for. My husband and I, after working 20 years together, took a boating trip along the East Coast last year during COVID-19 as digital nomads. It’s not that big of a boat, so we had some challenges, but meeting new people, seeing beautiful remote scenery, and the support of complete strangers was life changing. At the height of the ugliness on TV and on social media, we took a journey where we had never ventured more than 20 miles before, and people were really helpful and friendly.
Q: Lastly, do you have any closing comments, advice, or words for those that might look into e-GovMarket as a solution for their business?
A: e-GovMarket is different from how things are now. So was Uber or TaskRabbit. But it works, and you don’t even think about going back to the way things were before. I do look forward to when we turn that corner for our users.
Now that you have an idea of what we’re about, and you’ve gotten to know our founder, we’d love to talk to you. Do you want to get involved to boost revenue, partner with experts in your field, or have a brand new way to find your ideal client? Look no further! We're actively seeking small business partners that can increase accessibility and simplicity in the government marketplace. Reach out today to begin a conversation!
So What Do We DO Here at e-GovMarket?
We offer professional services through traditional procurement and through our e-commerce marketplaces:
- Section 508–– Document accessibility that allows for different standards choices, delivery times, and quality review.
- Editing–– Our users can select from multiple style guides or indicate their own. We offer different levels of editing such as copy editing (grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc.), structural editing (which means partial rewrites), and technical editing.
- Translating–– Currently, we offer 13 languages. The companies are U.S.-based and registered in the SBA System for Award Management.
The wait is over.
Welcome to e-GovMarket.