How to become certified as a Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB)

Female entrepreneurs face unique challenges compared to their male counterparts. If you’re a female business owner you’ve likely been hard at work to stay competitive in the male-dominated industry.

One way that female entrepreneurs are able to stay competitive is by becoming certified as a WOSB. After receiving certification you can compete for social and economic opportunities to help your businesses grow.

How can your company receive certification as a WOSB?

Here are some of the eligibility requirements for federal certification as established by the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Qualify as a small business for NAICS code

The North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) classifies businesses based on size to determine their eligibility for federal programs. In order to be certified as a WOSM your business must meet the NAICS standard for small business classification.

If your business qualifies you may be eligible to bid for federal contracting opportunities. These opportunities can include bidding for socio-economic programs. Because these types of contracts have no financial limits businesses the types of programs and the benefits they offer vary.

Prove that women are in charge of the business

To qualify as a WOSB you must prove that 51 percent or more of your company is owned and controlled by women. At least one female owner must be a U.S. citizen. In addition women must oversee and manage the business’ everyday operations. A woman must be making all business decisions that have long-term consequences and be a full-time employee of your company.

Women are taking the industry by storm and are quickly catching up to their male counterparts. If you take advantage of both state and federal certification programs you may be able to increase your competitive edge.