What types of small business/diversity certificates can I upload to my account?

What types of small business/diversity certificates can I upload to my account?

In order to classify your company as a diverse business, RecruitAlliance requires proof of certification. We accept certification from the following organizations:

  • The National Minority Supplier Development Council (and/or any of its affiliates)
  • The Women's Business Enterprise National Council (and/or any of its affiliates)
  • Government agencies and/or entities (City of Phoenix, etc.)
  • State agencies and/or entities (Florida Department of Transportation, etc)
  • Clearinghouses


  1. What is certification? Certification as a woman- or minority-owned business indicates an objective third-party organization has closely examined a business and determined (usually through submitted documents and a site visit) that the business is owned, operated and controlled by a woman or minority or a group of women or minorities. While each certifying agency may have varying standards, most agencies require a business owner to be a U.S. Citizen or have U.S. Resident Alien status and to meet specific criteria proving true ownership and control of the business.
  2. Why do some of my customers care so much about certification? If some of your corporate or government customers are asking you if you are certified or are encouraging you to become certified, there is a reason for it. Often times, these entities are tracking their dollars spent with diverse businesses (including woman business enterprises (WBEs), minority business enterprises (MBEs), small business enterprises (SBEs), disable veteran business enterprises (DVBEs), etc) by both dollar amount and percentage of total spend. They are tracking these dollars for any number of reasons, which may include:

    • Business objectives related to customer base, competitive edge, or economic growth
    • Contract requirements, meaning one, or more, of their customers with whom they are under contract is requiring them to report diverse spend as a requirement in fulfilling the contract
    In the case of contract fulfillment, some of your customers may be facing negative consequences if they fail to comply with diverse business spend requirements. Their contract could possibly be cancelled or not renewed, which could mean lost business to you if you are sub-contracting to them. In complying with contract requirements and mandates, corporations and government entities often require certification as a means of identifying diverse suppliers and protecting the integrity of the diverse business figures they are reporting.
  3. Is acquiring certification easy?
 Becoming certified takes time, effort and diligence on your part as a business owner, as it requires a substantial amount of paperwork. Depending on the certifying agency, certification may require a fee as high as $350 and can take up to 90 days from the time you submit your paperwork. You can reduce process time by ensuring complete and accurate information in the packages you submit to the certifying organization. Keep in mind, certifying organizations are required to strictly adhere to standards in order to protect the integrity of the certification, which makes it more valuable to you once you have it.

    Some of the information and documents you may be asked for when applying for certification include, but are not limited to:
    • History of the business
    • Financial structure
    • Business plan
    • Proof of citizenship and gender (if applying as a woman-owned business)
    • Financial statements
    • Customer references
    • Loan activity
    • Stock certificates
    • Tax returns
    • Legal structure documents:
      • By-laws
      • Articles of Incorporation
      • Articles of Organization
      • Stock Ledgers
      • Management agreements
      • Franchise/license agreements
    • Resumes
    • List of employees
    • Salary information
    • Profit sharing information
    • Copies of bank-signature authorization card
  4. Who Provides Certification? 
There are various types of certification from different private organizations and public agencies. Plus, each certifying group has its own form and requires specific information and documentation. Be prepared. This can be a drawn-out process. Before you begin filling out applications, research which certifications will benefit your business. These are the primary levels of certification and the organizations that manage the application process:




Certifying Organization


8(a), Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB), HUBZone, Service-disabled Veteran-owned

U.S. Small Business Administration


Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), Disabled Veteran Owned Business Enterprise (DVBE)

State government agencies, state Department of Transportation and affiliated organizations


Small Business Enterprise (SBE)

City or County government agencies depending on where your business is located


Minority Business Enterprise (MBE), Woman-owned Business Enterprise (WBE)

National Minority Supplier Development Council, Women's Business Enterprise National Council


Assistance with application for various certifications

Small Business Development Centers, Procurement Technical Assistance Centers, EZCertify

Leave a comment?


related articles