Sandia Labs gives more to small businesses

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – One of New Mexico’s labs is not only looking at their bottom line, they’re also helping small businesses grow. This past year, they gave even more.

Its unassuming facade offers few clues about what’s inside. Visitors first affirm they’re U.S. citizens before grabbing a pair of safety goggles. They’re required. Once they pass through a bright hallway, they reach several, large cubicles and a pair of double doors.

One step through the threshold and Bogue’s mission is clear.

“We make many, many, many parts here,” said Bogue Machine Company President and military veteran Mark Bogue.

It’s a machining shop, where workers craft metal parts with high-powered machines.

“We can take a drawing and a piece of metal and turn it into something that may be on the space shuttle,” said Bogue.

Bogue spent four years in the U.S. Coast Guard before joining his father at Bogue Machine.

“We started out in the late ’60s, early ’70s, as a two-man facility out behind my dad’s house,” explained Bogue.

When his father started the business, Bogue says a business had to work with New Mexico’s two national labs if they wanted to be a player in the industry, and it’s not much different, today. Sandia makes up close to 15-percent of their annual volume. Representatives from Sandia Labs say that’s no accident.

“Mark has proven in his company and Bogue Machine to be able to produce, develop the parts that we need, to do the work we have to do,” said Sandia’s Small Business Utilization Manager Don Devoti.

Devoti says he and his team are responsible for tracking down small businesses and contracting them for work.

“We look for companies that are leaders in their industry, that are financially stable, that have safety concerns and address them like we do. That are certified in quality standards, that have technical expertise and past performance to do the work,” Devoti said.

Companies must meet strict qualifications and they still have to bid on jobs. Yet, by identifying viable small businesses, Sandia is able to tailor the process to target minorities, women, even vets, like Mark.

“We want the best suppliers and we can find them here in New Mexico,” Devoti said.

Sandia has been able to contract out more work this past year. It means more money for small businesses, assuring Mark’s 40 employees continue to get paid, all while helping Sandia bolster national security.

To read Sandia Laboratories’ 2015 Economic Impact, click here.

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