Software Development

Bidscale is launching a social network for finding government contracts

The Arlington company will soon launch Bidscale Connect, which helps connect the federal government with companies seeking contracting opportunities.

A look at Bidscale connect.

(Courtesy photo)

When Arlington, Virginia-based Bidscale began its life as a consulting company in 2020, its founders didn’t quite intend to create a new social network for government contract bids.

But two years later, the startup is set to do exactly that. On Dec. 5, Bidscale is launching Bidscale Connect, a social media-style analytics tool for government contracting and procurement. The platform, according to leadership, is essentially a virtual meetup space for both buyers and sellers of government contracts. The platform is free to use and has seen 500 pre-sign-ups so far. It will also be assisting with a Department of Defense health contract.

Platform users can see recommendations for contracts generated through AI. Upon signing up, those users can specify their industry and tools, similar to how social media makes you pick topics of interest. They can also manage their RFPs, RFQs and RFIs; see market research; browse federal contracting options; communicate with contracting officials, and solicit feedback from leaders. Once they find contracts, users can choose to like, dislike or watch contracts (which saves them for users) — all of which helps the algorithm better understand their company’s needs and services. The platform was developed in AWS native and the AI is powered by Databricks.

“We’re trying to digitize and just trying to bring modern practices and philosophies to this continuous evolution of partnership between the federal government and industry,” founder Tony Kwag told Technical.ly.

With the new platform, Bidscale Chief Strategist Ray Britt said that he hopes to solve some of the main issues for both the government as a buyer and industry companies as the sellers. One problem that he sees consistently is in the relationship-building process, where there’s a disconnect between companies with solutions and the officials looking to purchase them.

“There are so many barriers that are not intentional that prevent you from connecting with companies that have capabilities to solve problems that you have, on the government side,” Britt said. “Conversely, you could have a world-class solution on the industry side and you can’t let the government know about it because of the proposal process.”

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The fact that the federal government is so large, he added, also means that it’s challenging for any one company to fulfill all the needs of a contract. As a result, many in the industry form partnerships and prime contractors made up of a few different subcontractors from different companies. With Bidscale Connect, Kwag and Britt hope that companies can find these connections, as the platform also lets users connect and converse with each other.

“We expect that our platform will be used to not only find that matchmaking between the capability of a company and the problem statements being posed by the government, but to find multiple of those companies so that they can all form one, comprehensive team to tackle that problem together,” Kwag said.

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