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Make Me A Match FAQs

What is Procurement?
Procurement is the acquisition of goods and/or services at the best possible price, in the right quantity and quality, at the right time, in the right place and from the right source.  Corporations use outside vendors to supply them with various goods and services to help the company run efficiently.

Why is NAWBO-SFBA holding a Procurement Summit?
NAWBO-SFBA wants to help its members and other women entrepreneurs secure contracts and expand opportunities to do business in this tough economic climate.

What happened to NAWBO-U?
NAWBO-U will take place in October 2009.

What are Prime Suppliers?
Prime Suppliers are generally majority companies (not diverse i.e. women-owned, minority-owned, etc.) who contract directly with a corporation.  Prime Suppliers are also referred to as Tier 1 suppliers.  In the supplier diversity arena, many corporations require or strongly encourage their Prime Suppliers to subcontract to diverse suppliers.  In this scenario, the diverse suppliers are considered Sub or Tier 2 suppliers.

What types of corporations and businesses will be at the Summit?
Currently, Union Bank of California and Pacific Gas & Electric will be at the Summit, with many of their Prime Suppliers. These “Primes” will range in industry and size.  Every opportunity will be made to match women business owners with subcontracting opportunities available with the Corporations and their Primes.  This Summit highlights a unique and targeted matchmaker process.  Business capabilities assessments are conducted with the women business owners, and then they are “matched” with the contracting opportunities presented by the Corporations and their Primes.  Many other corporations are considering being a part of the Summit and we will update the FAQ’s as soon as they area confirmed.

How is this different from other procurement conferences?
Most procurement and diversity fairs create opportunities for Women Business Enterprises (WBE’s) to meet with corporate exhibitors and make a sales pitch.  After that the WBEs are asked to go to the corporate website and follow up on business opportunities.  The Make Me a Match! Procurement Summit is designed so that each WBE registered will receive a business capabilities/assessment interview from a diversity expert far in advance of the event.  The diversity expert will then establish one-on-one appointments with the most appropriate Primes and connect them prior to the Summit so they may communicate about contract opportunities.  By the time the WBE meets with the Prime on May 15th, we hope that it is the final step rather than the first step in signing a contract.

What types of questions will I be asked in the interview?
You will be asked about your service or product, target clients, past and projected revenue, client mix, capacity for new business and strategic alliances.  Each interview is a little different depending upon the business type, so not all questions will apply to all women business owners.  The interview will take approximately 20-30 minutes via phone.

Do I need to be certified to attend?  What types of certification are recognized or required?
No, you do not need to be certified to attend, however many companies with supplier diversity initiatives require WBENC certification for women business owners.   California public utility companies under the PUC require Supplier Clearinghouse certification  to do direct business with them as a diverse firm.  NAWBO-SFBA encourages you to research and begin the process of the most appropriate certification for your business so it doesn’t become an obstacle when you meet with the Primes.

What if my business is not qualified to meet with any of the Prime Suppliers?
The WBE/Prime Supplier matchmaking is just one aspect of this Summit.  In the event your company cannot be matched, you will still benefit greatly from this Summit by meeting prospective customers, building relationships, and heightening your knowledge and awareness in leveraging opportunities as a woman-owned business.  This is your opportunity to create new relationships that will bear opportunities in the future.

What are the Roundtables?
The morning will be filled with Educational and Networking Roundtables for you to attend between your scheduled one-on-one meetings and for those not interested in participating in the one-on-ones with the Corporations and Prime Suppliers.  The Educational Roundtables will be led by expert speakers and cover various aspects of procurement and developing your business.  The Networking Roundtables will give you an opportunity to meet with other women business owners to discuss possible business.

Why should I attend?
Other than enhancing and expanding your business through contracting opportunities, this will be an educational event covering several aspects of procurement, contracts, and certification.  Even if you aren’t interested in securing corporate contracts, there will be Networking Roundtables for you to meet with other women business owners and explore possible business.

Is this event part of the Leaders & Legends Luncheon?
The 25th Annual Leaders & Legends Luncheon will immediately follow the Make Me a Match! Procurement Summit.  You must register for each event separately.

How much does the event cost and what attendee type am I?
Affiliate Partner members: $35
Non-members: $50

To qualify as a NAWBO-SFBA member, you must be a current member at the time of registration.  Other NAWBO chapter members do not qualify for the NAWBO-SFBA rate.  To qualify as an Affiliate Partner, you must be a current member of one of the associations listed below.  All other registrants and the general public must register as a non-member.

I forgot my passcode or it does not seem to be working.
You will be asked to enter the appropriate code when completing your registration.

The following are the appropriate codes.  They are not case sensitive, but please ensure that there are no spaces in your code when entering.

Affiliate Partner member: PARTNER09
Sponsors and Primes: SPONSOR09

We will ensure that all registrants that use codes are members of the organization that they specify.

Who are the Affiliate Partners?
The current Affiliate Partners include:
NAWBO Silicon Valley * San Francisco Hispanic Chamber of Commerce * 100 Black Women * Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center * National Council of Asian American Business Associations * ASTRA Women’s Business Alliance * San Francisco Small Business Commission * San Francisco Human Rights Commission

For More Information, contact:  Diana Kimbrell at [email protected] OR (415) 331-1334.