How to Participate

A Step-by-Step Approach to Participation in the Department of Defense Mentor-Protégé Program

Below are the fundamental steps to participating in the DoD Mentor-Protégé Program (MPP). In addition to the simple outline provided here, detailed briefings are available in the OSBP office and are encouraged.

Step 1: Establish a Counterpart

Mentors and Protégés are solely responsible for finding their counterpart. Legislatively, DoD Offices of Small Business Programs (OSBP) participation in the teaming of partnering Mentors and Protégés is prohibited. Therefore, we strongly encourage firms to explore existing business relationships in an effort to establish a Mentor-Protégé relationship.

Communication, Compatibility, and Commitment are key to a successful Agreement!

A Mentor firm must be currently performing under at least one active approved subcontracting plan negotiated with DoD or another Federal agency pursuant to FAR 19.702, and be currently eligible for the award of Federal contracts. New Mentor Applications must be approved and may be submitted to and approved by the OSBP of the cognizant Military Service or Defense Agency (if concurrently submitting a reimbursable Agreement) or to the DoD OSBP office prior to the submission of an Agreement.

A Protégé firm must be either a small disadvantaged business (SDB), a qualifying organization employing the severely disabled, a women-owned small business (WOSB), a service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB), or located in a historically underutilized business zone (HUBZone).

Step 2: Determine the Type of Agreement
There are two types of agreements: directly reimbursed or credit.

  • Direct Reimbursed
    Directly reimbursed agreements are those in which a mentor receives reimbursement for allowable costs of developmental assistance provided to a protégé.
  • Credit
    Credit agreements are those in which a mentor receives a multiple of credit toward their Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) subcontracting goal based on the cost of developmental assistance provided to a protégé.

Step 3: Develop Agreement
An assessment of the needs of a protégé, which includes measurable milestones, is recommended prior to the development of an agreement. Developmental assistance should align with the protégé's strategic vision.

Step 4: Submit Agreement Proposal
Directly reimbursed agreement applications should be submitted to the defense agency’s Office of Small Business Programs (OSBP).

Credit agreements should be submitted to the Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA).

Step 5: Start Agreement
Credit agreements start on the date they are approved. Directly reimbursed agreements start on the date funds are obligated to the contract.

Step 6: Reporting and DCMA Review Requirements
Semi-annual reports, annual DCMA performance reviews and protégé two-year-out reports are required for each DoD MPP agreement. DCMA annual performance reviews are a major factor in determining the amount of reimbursement a mentor is eligible to receive in the remaining years of directly reimbursed agreements.

Step 7: Ask Questions
If you have any questions about the program process, protocol, requirements or benefits, please email Detailed MPP briefings are available by appointment.