Cybersecurity is becoming big business, which can make it difficult for small businesses that don't have the funds to buy needed security tools.

To help those businesses improve their cybersecurity postures, the Small Business Administration is developing a training regimen and is looking for vendors to support that effort.

Request for Information:

The SBA posted a sources sought notice on FedBizOpps on Jan. 7 asking for companies that can "provide effective, engaging, interactive online cybersecurity training to firms" participating in the agency's 8(a) Small Business Development Program. The program includes companies owned by low-income and economically and socially disadvantaged persons, as well as businesses in areas with low incomes and high unemployment.

"Through the classes/training/courses, participants will learn how to most effectively secure information through best cybersecurity practices; identify their risk and the types of cyber threats; and learn best practices for guarding against cyber threats," according to the request for information.

The agency said it could develop this training in-house but believes existing commercial options would be cheaper and more effective.

The RFI notes that training can take the form of virtual instructor-led sessions, roll-playing simulations or other formats but must be available online. The training should also be "evergreen materials that will retain relevancy over the course of at least two years."

The RFI asks interested vendors to provide answers to 10 questions:

  1. What are some examples of your past performances developing and presenting cybersecurity training classes/webinars?
  2. What computer certifications do you currently hold?
  3. What other federal/public agencies have you been awarded contracts to develop and present cybersecurity training for? What is/are the period of performance?
  4. Was your cybersecurity training development and presented with the latest (i.e. within a year) information?
  5. Does your firm develop its own computer training classes or is it subcontracted to another firm?
  6. Does your firm personally instruct the cybersecurity training classes or is it subcontracted to another agency? What are the least and most amount of participants per class?
  7. What type of businesses (i.e. financial, construction, consultant firms, etc.), their size (i.e. large, small) and socio-economic status (if applicable) have you trained within the past five years?
  8. What are some other type of training classes your firm has developed and presented to businesses?
  9. What is the average cost per person to train on cybersecurity and does this cost includes travel?
  10. What is the average cost to develop/create a cybersecurity training course?

In the notice, SBA said it plans on awarding at least one fixed-price contract but will consider multiple awards.

Interested vendors should submit their responses to SBA by noon on Jan. 15.