Oregon Small Business Initiative

The Oregon Department of Transportation, the Oregon Association of Minority Entrepreneurs, and the Oregon-Columbia Chapter of the Associated General Contractors have joined forces to create the Oregon Small Business Initiative. Today’s infrastructure projects are more difficult and technical than ever before, and the initiative was created to improve the capability and capacity all contractors working on ODOT projects, including primes; subcontractors; and minority, women, and emerging small businesses (MWESB). The initiative will accomplish this through several means: training for MWESB contractors on general business subjects, such as estimating and bidding, certified payroll, and cash flow management, with additional ODOT-specific information that could include training with specific prime contractors; training for prime contractors that could include diversity, mentoring, and small business issues; and facilitating networking between MWESB and prime contractors.

[HR]Upcoming Training

Contractor/Vendor Training: Facility Contacts

September 11
5:30–9 pm, ODOT Region 1 Headquarters, 123 NW Flanders, Portland, OR 97209
View the flyer

Learn how to find NON-HIGHWAY opportunities to bid on ODOT Facilities projects; learn how to be successful working on an ODOT Facilities project; learn about the General Conditions for Public Improvement and get your OWN free copy; and receive real details about the expectations in the General Conditions and get answers to your questions.View the flyer.


ODOT Office of Civil Rights has developed a series of Frequently Asked Questions on the Disadvantaged Business Enterprise program, which is now posted on the Office of Civil Rights DBE Program web page under Resource Documents.

The DBE FAQs provide information on the following:

  • Program Background
  • Certification Eligibility
  • DBE Goals (Overall and Contract – general information)
  • DBE Goals on A&E Contracts
  • DBE Goals on Construction Contracts
  • Contract Administration: Monitoring DBE Participation
  • DBE Networking, Outreach & Resources

ODOT Small Business Prime Opportunities

The Oregon Department of Transportation lets projects in a variety of scopes and sizes. The agency encourages eligible small business contractors to become prequalified and submit prime contractor bids on appropriate-sized and scoped projects.

To view ODOT project opportunities, click on the link to the six month project letting forecast list below.

  • Search the six month project forecast schedule by bid date, estimated project size, region, county, and keyword here.
  • Prequalify as a prime bidder for ODOT here.
  • Tips to avoid bid rejection for ODOT projects here.
  • View advertised project bidding plans and specifications on eBIDS and register as a bidding plan holder for a project here.

Overcoming Obstacles: Best Practices for Subcontractors, General Contractors, and Public Agencies

The SB-GO! Council tackled some general issues with doing business in the construction industry. From nearly two years of meetings comes a whitepaper, with suggestions and tricks to be more profitable and successful.

Read more…

ODOT Highway/Bridge Construction Contracting Useful Websites

OAME Links

More calendar items are available here. We have an extensive calendar, and many events not specifically targeted to small or MWESB businesses that would be beneficial. To add events, meetings, or opportunities to the calendar, contact Karla Holland, 503-685-8319.

Upcoming Small Business Events

Date Event Name Location Category Description
Sep 16, 2014 BESThq Tech Power Hour BESThq Small Business Get all of your technology questions answered at the monthly Power Hour with computer expert Quincy Whitfield of QJW Computer Consulting. Wondering how to manage your data, software, systems or networks? Do you feel the maze of technology is leaving your business vulnerable, dazed or confused?
Sep 23, 2014 BESThq Leadership Power Hour BESThq Small Business Join the Leadership Power Hour. Meet a rotating panel of dynamic leaders in our community and become a more effective leader yourself! Training is free for BESThq members, yet guests are welcome to purchase a ticket and attend!
Sep 25, 2014 BESThq Business Academy: Communication Strategies for Success BESThq Small Business Looking to take your business to the next level? Feel like you are always working harder with less results? Ready to grow in a solid, community based learning space?
Oct 3, 2014 Intermodal Vendor Fair ODOT Region 2 Small Business The Intermodal Civil Rights Team's fair is a chance for certified DBEs and MWESBs and small businesses meet with Oregon transportation providers to learn all about grant opportunities that exist with transit providers. If you are interested or plan to attend, please register on the Office of Civil Rights website.
Oct 7, 2014 BESThq Risk Management Power Hour BESThq Small Business Do you know about risky business? Perhaps the greatest challenge of being a small business owner is "knowing what you don't know." Get all of your risk management questions answered at the monthly Power Hour with attorney Diane Henkels of Henkels Law. Training is free for BESThq members, yet guests are welcome to purchase a ticket and attend!

To add events, meetings, or opportunities to the calendar, contact Karla Holland, 503-685-8319.