In July, 2010, The Washington Post released a report called Top Secret America, an elaborate investigative piece about American companies that do Top Secret business with the government and the government agencies that employ them. If your Target Filter includes companies that have federal government contracts, this is an excellent report for you. Reporters Dana Priest and William M. Arkin created a multi-media display of data following their two years of research. I like this database because it includes a great deal of hard-to-find information about privately-held companies (although it includes very large companies and organizations as well). Aboout 2000 companies are included.
Why would a whale-hunting company want to explore this study and search this database? Here are a few reasons:
- You want to start doing business with government agencies that handle national security or to increase the amount of business that you are already doing. The website is a rich source of information identifying every government agency that has a piece of responsibility for security, how they are interrelated, who are the private contractors that they employ, and how the entire system works. It will help you deconstruct a vast body of information.
- You provide products or services to companies that deliver one of 23 types of work to government agencies, i.e. management and administration, training, disaster preparedness, law enforcement. If you provide products or services to companies like these, you can find the ones on this list by searching the type of work they do.
- You provide services to companies that go after government contracts. For example, The Whale Hunters® offers training, research, and writing services to help companies improve their win-rate on government RFPs (read a case study here). A number of our clients are on this “Top Secret America” list. Now we have a mechanism to identify others who may want our services.
- You provide products or services that all kinds of companies buy, and you want to identify companies that are growing and making money. The government continues to spend billions (trillions?) of dollars on all kinds of national security measures. The companies who are successful in winning these contracts are, for now, recession-proof.
- You provide personnel staffing or other Human Resources services and you want to help these government agencies and private-sector companies find employees who qualify for top secret security clearances.
Through the Top Secret America work, you can not only generate leads for you and scout those leads, you can learn a great deal more about the convoluted but lucrative world of government contracting. This study is continually being updated. Hats off to the Post and to the reporting team for a rich resource.