Tony Sullivan, Procurement Officer
200 Kent Avenue
La Plata, MD 20646
Below is information and frequently asked questions related to doing business with Charles County Department of Social Services. Please note that no solicitations for contracted services are posted to this site.
ALL BUSINESSES should register on eMaryland Marketplace (eMM), the State’s procurement portal. Registration is free and you can begin here: https://emaryland.buyspeed.com/bso/. The State of Maryland and many counties use eMM to publish solicitations. Once registered with eMM, your business will receive email notifications of solicitations issued under the NAICS codes your business identified during registration. So be sure to register for as many NAICS codes as may apply to your business.
When you receive notification of a solicitation:
- Review the solicitation’s scope of work to determine whether your business is able to meet the requirements and whether you would like to submit a Bid or Proposal to the State. If your business is not able to meet the solicitation’s requirements, it still may be possible to perform as a subcontractor.
- Attend the Pre-Bid/Proposal conferences for those solicitations your business is interested in. Pre-Bid/Proposal conferences are a good opportunity to improve your understanding of solicitation requirements, network with other vendors and discuss potential subcontracting opportunities.
- Ask questions! If you don’t understand or are not sure about something in the solicitation, ask. During the procurement process, questions must be directed to the Procurement Officer, who is identified in the solicitation.
- Make sure your Bid or Proposal includes all required documentation and fully addresses all requirements in the solicitation from the requesting State agency.
- Submit Bids or Proposals by or before the Bid/Proposal Due Date and Time. Bids or Proposals submitted after the Due Date and Time will be rejected.
WOMEN-OWNED and MINORITY BUSINESSES should register with the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) to become certified as Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs).
Only this pool of certified MBEs is eligible to be considered for MBE subcontracting opportunities on State of Maryland contracts. Visit the MDOT MBE website.
From the MDOT MBE homepage, vendors can access an overview, applications assistance workshop, and certificates and forms for becoming certified.
SMALL BUSINESSES can self-certify through eMM for the Small Business Reserve (SBR) Program. Information for this program, including registration information, may be found here. Some procurements are reserved for small businesses, which means that small businesses are competing only against other small businesses.
VETERAN-OWNED SMALL BUSINESS ENTERPRISES (VSBEs) must be verified by the Center for Veterans Enterprise of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs in order to be eligible to be considered for VSBE subcontracting opportunities on State of Maryland contracts. VSBEs can obtain more information and apply for verification through the Office of Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization on their website.
How can I get a contract with DSS?
Service providers are selected via a competitive process. A competitive solicitation – a Request for Proposal (RFP) or Request for Qualifications (RFQ) will be posted on the eMaryland Marketplace (eMM). You must submit your proposal as noted in the solicitation. Proposals will be evaluated to determine which service provider(s) best meet the requirements as set forth in the RFP/RFQ.
How will I know when a solicitation is posted?
A competitive solicitation will be posted on the eMaryland Marketplace (eMM). When a proposal is posted to eMM, an email is automatically sent to each service provider that is registered on the state system and has indicated interest in receiving notification for each category.
Service providers will be notified of solicitations as notifications of State bids as DSS sends notification via email of all solicitations to service providers that have submitted their interest in contracting with DSS.
When do you plan to select service providers?
Services contracted through the competitive solicitation process typically are reviewed within two weeks of the solicitation’s closing date. Most services are contracted for one year. However, some services are contracted for multiple years.