Notice:
MyFloridaHome Contact DMS Site Map DMS CUSTOMER SATISFACTION SURVEY

Department of Management Services

Frequently Asked Questions

  

1.  What is the Mentor-Protégé Program?

The State of Florida’s Mentor-Protégé Program aims to strengthen small businesses through guidance and feedback from established businesses, or mentors. This program, administered by the Office of Supplier Diversity (OSD), centers on a shared commitment between an established business owner and a certified woman, veteran or minority business owner.

The Office of Supplier Diversity works with certified businesses to ensure that they are appropriately matched with an established business based on their strengths and needs. The open and honest working relationship between a protégé and mentor organization produces a business support system that will help a small business grow and develop.

  

2.  How do I become a mentor?

A business must submit a letter or email of interest to the Office of Supplier Diversity, and meet the following requirements:

  • be headquartered in the State of Florida;
  • be an established and successful corporation generating more than $500,000 in annual revenue;
  • have a senior-level officer willing to sign a 12-month agreement with OSD to participate in the program;
  • designate a company representative to commit to a 12-month period;
  • have the resources to commit to the developmental needs of the protégé; and
  • understand that equal access for emerging businesses makes good sense and that partnerships with emerging businesses will enable growth for larger organizations.

In addition, mentors must demonstrate the following:

  • Favorable financial health, including profitability for at least the last two years;
  • Good standing as a state-contracted vendor; and
  • The ability to provide valuable support to a protégé through lessons learned, practical experience gained from state term contracts and general knowledge of government contracting.

   

3.  How do I become a protégé?

A business interested in being a protégé should submit a letter or email of interest to the Office of Supplier Diversity, and meet the following requirements:

  • be the owner of a certified woman-, veteran- or minority-owned Florida-based business;
  • designate a senior-level officer as a company representative committed to a 12-month agreement with a mentor;
  • be willing to submit to an evaluation of the company in order to assess the most critical areas to concentrate on for success and to identify enhancement opportunities for growth and development;
  • have a positive attitude and be receptive to information exchange with the assigned mentor; and
  • be an active vendor in MyFloridaMarketPlace.

   

4.  What is the commitment to participate as either a mentor or protégé?

Each participant is asked to be active in the program for one year.

  

5.  If I am not a certified business enterprise by the Office of Supplier Diversity, may I participate?

At this time, the program’s efforts are focused on the businesses that are certified with the Office of Supplier Diversity. To apply for certification, visit www.dms.myflorida.com/osd.

   

6.  Is there training available to be a mentor or protégé?

While there is no training available for this program, the program serves as a training opportunity for both the mentor and protégé.

  

7.  What are the reporting requirements of the program?

The Protégé is required to provide a bi-monthly reporting to OSD of all program-related activities. Reportable submissions must exclude any confidential information. The report should include, but is not limited to the following items:

  • Training: Include type of training (accounting, bid preparation, job costing, etc.), who received it and when.
  • Type and description of work conducted, including bid preparation, how to do business with the state, etc., including the number of hours spent.
  • Submit to an evaluation of the company to assess the most critical areas to concentrate on for success and to identify enhancement opportunities for growth and development.

  

8.  Is the Mentor-Protégé Program considered a joint venture?

No.

 

9.  Can the Mentor-Protégé agreement be terminated before the expiration of the agreement?

Yes. The agreement between the mentor and protégé may be terminated before the expiration of the one year agreement. However, at least a one year commitment to participate in the program is requested.

  

10.  Can the Mentor-Protégé agreement be renewed after the expiration date?

Yes. If both the mentor and protégé find the program beneficial, a new agreement may be developed.

  

11.  How are protégés matched with mentors?

The Office of Supplier Diversity will review all requests to serve as mentor or protégé and consider the needs of each party. After the review, mentors and protégés will be matched based on needs of the protégé and the expertise available with participating mentors. Each agreement must be signed before it is executed.

  

12.  Can a mentor have more than one protégé?

In some instances, a mentor may opt to assist more than one protégé.

  

13.  Can a protégé have more than one mentor?

In some instances, a protégé may have more than one mentor.

  

14.  Can a request be made for a specific mentor?

The Office of Supplier Diversity will consider all factors when letters of interest are submitted and do its best to provide the appropriate matching to benefit both mentor and protégé.