Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Q: What are the requirements a Mentor firm must meet prior to applying for participation in the
MP Program?

A: A Mentor firm must have at least one active subcontracting plan and be eligible for Federal contracts.

Q: What are the eligibility requirements for a Protégé firm?

A: A Protégé firm may qualify as a Protégé firm if it is:

  1. A Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) concern as defined by section 8(d)(3)(C) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(D)(3)(C)) which is:
    • Eligible for the award of Federal contracts; and
    • A small business according to the SBA size standard for the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code which represents the contemplated supplies or services to be provided by the protégé firm to the mentor firm; and
    • Certified by the Small Business Administration as an SDB.
  2. A business entity that meets the criteria in above and is owned and controlled by either an Indian tribe as defined by section 8(a)(13) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(a)(13)) or a Native Hawaiian Organization as defined by section 8(a)(15) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(a)(15)); and is certified by the Small Business Administration as an SDB.
  3. A qualified organization employing the severely disabled which self certifies that it meets the criteria for such entities defined in Pub. L. 102-172, section 8064A.
  4. A woman-owned small business (WOSB) which self certifies that it meets the criteria for such entities in accordance with the DFARS and by the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(d)(3)(D).
  5. A qualified HUBZone small business concern as determined by the Small Business Administration in accordance with 13 CFR Part 126.
  6. A small business concern owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans (SDVOSB) as defined in Section 8(d)(3) of the Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 637(d)(3)).

Q: What is the difference between a credit and direct reimbursed Agreement?

A: Costs incurred under a credit Agreement are not directly reimbursed, but are applied under Federal Agency subcontracting plan 19.703 towards SDB subcontracting goals in different multiples based on assistance provided.

Reimbursed Agreements provide reimbursement for reasonable, allocable, and allowable expenses to be reimbursed to the Mentor through a contract line item.

Q: How do I find a Mentor?

A: First, look at the companies with whom your firm does business. You may also review the DoD Subcontracting Directory. After reviewing the list, research the firm and identify companies doing business in your area of interest.

Q: Can a Protégé firm be a Mentor?

A: In accordance with DFARS Appendix I-104 (e), a DoD Protégé firm may only have one (1) active DoD Mentor-Protégé Agreement (MPA). Upon completion of a current MPA, a DoD Protégé firm may commence new DoD MPA(s) as a Mentor provided they are an approved DoD Mentor in accordance with Section 861, subsection (c)(1), of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2016.

Q: What other information must be submitted when I submit my Agreement application for review and approval?

A: For credit agreements, the only submission requirement is the Agreement application. For direct reimbursement Agreements an endorsement letter from the program manager, an endorsement letter and funding request from the DoD component's Office of Small Business Programs are required with submission of the Agreement application.

Q: Once the Agreement has been approved are there any other requirements the Mentor firm or Protégé firm must fulfill?

A: In accordance with DFARS Appendix I-111 both a Mentor and Protégé firm must report on the progress made under active Mentor-Protégé Agreements semi-annually and the Protégé firm must report on the progress made under the Mentor-Protégé Agreement annually. The Protégé firm is also required to provide data on the firm for 2 fiscal years after the expiration of the program participation term.

Q: When can a Mentor firm incur costs related to the Mentor-Protégé Agreement?

A: A Mentor application and signed Mentor-Protégé Agreement must be approved by the Office of Small Business Programs prior to incurring any cost.

Q: Can a Mentor firm receive direct reimbursement for direct costs other than that which is outlined in Appendix I (eg. incidentals: travel, equipment, etc.)?

A: Yes. A Mentor firm with prior approval can receive direct reimbursement of incidental costs not to exceed 10% of the total reimbursed cost of the Agreement.

Q: Is there a time limit or term for period of performance in which the Agreement must be completed?

A: In accordance with Section 861, subsection (e)(2), of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2016, the period of performance of a Mentor-Protégé Agreement may not exceed three years. Based on unusual circumstances, extensions beyond that period may be authorized. However, the period of performance shall not exceed five years.

Q: How long does it typically take to get a Mentor application approved?

A: Ten (10) business days depending on OSD and OSBP tasks, industry events, and business travel. One week appears to be about average.

Q: Our company is an approved DoD Mentor. However, we recently changed our name. Are we still an approved DoD Mentor or do we need to resubmit an application?

A: You must submit a new DoD Mentor application under the new company name. See the Resources page for the Mentor application and instructions.

Q: What do these acronyms mean?


BBP Better Buying Power (BBP 3.0)
CONUS Contiguous United States (48 states excluding Alaska and Hawaii)
CR Credit Agreement
DCMA Defense Contracting Management Agency
DFARS Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations Supplement
DISA Defense Information Systems Agency
DLA Defense Logistics Agency
DoD Department of Defense
FAR Federal Acquisition Regulation
FFATA Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act
FPDS-NG Federal Procurement Data System - Next Generation
FSRS Federal Subaward Reporting System
HBCU/MI Historically Black Colleges & Universities / Minority Institutions
MILDEP Military Department
MP Mentor-Protégé Program
NGA National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (formerly NIMA)
OSD Office of the Secretary of Defense
OSBP Office of Small Business Programs (formerly SADBU)
POC Point of Contact
PTAC Procurement Technical Assistance Center
RE Reimbursable Agreement
SADBU Small & Disadvantaged Business Utilization (now OSBP)
SAM The System for Award Management
SBA Small Business Administration
SBDC Small Business Development Center
SDB Small Disadvantaged Business
SDVOSB Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business
USD(AT&L) Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics
VOSB Veteran-Owned Small Business
WOSB Women-Owned Small Business