As part of Raleigh’s Strategic Plan, Raleigh has hired Miller3 Consulting to look at the MWBE Program and to determine if there are any exclusionary practices in the solicitation and award of contracts to minority, and women‐owned, and disadvantaged business enterprises (MWDBEs). The objective of the Disparity Study is to:
- Determine the effectiveness and efficiency of the current Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprise (“MWBE”) Program
- Provide recommendations on any programmatic changes or resource needs, if necessary
- Provide the City with current legal guidance relative to new legislation, policies, and procedures to meet any constitutional mandates
- Garner programmatic remedies to address any identified underutilization of MWBE businesses
- Reducing or eliminating identified barriers that adversely impact MWBE participation on City projects
Study schedule. Kick-off December 2021 with an anticipated completion date of late November 2022.
Project initiation. The City and M3 Consulting kicked off the 2021 City of Raleigh Disparity Study in December 2021 with a series of virtual meetings with various City departments and representatives. M3 Consulting met with the City to introduce the study, answer questions, and begin the data collection process starting with assessing and understanding contracting and vendor data that the City maintains.
Data collection. The consultant is currently in the data collection phase on contracts and procurements that the City awarded during the study period as well as information about the vendors that participated in that work.
Next steps include:
- Community engagement.
- One-on-one interviews: The project team will conduct a series of one-on-one interviews with both non-minority and minority business owners on their experiences doing business or attempting to do business with the City
- Focus Groups: The project team will conduct a series of focus groups with both non-minority and minority business owners on specific topics related to their experiences doing business or attempting to do business with the City
- Public Hearings: The project team will conduct a series of public hearings in various locations throughout the City, which will tentatively be held in the Spring of 2022. During the public hearings, The project team will present information about the disparity study, answer any questions, and solicit participants for any verbal or written testimony that they would like to share about their experiences working in the marketplace. Further details including specific dates, times, and locations of the meetings will be available soon.
- Data analysis. Will begin analyzing data assessing the subindustries that account for the majority of the City contracting, the geographical area that is most relevant to the City's contracting, and the percentage of total contract dollars M/WBEs businesses received on the City's prime contracts and subcontracts during the study period.
- Capacity surveys. In the Spring of 2022, the project team will begin conducting capacity email and telephone surveys with businesses in the relevant geographic market area that perform work that is relevant to City contracting.
If we contact your business, please participate in the community engagement and survey process to help ensure an accurate and comprehensive survey process!
The project team includes four firms. Miller3 Consulting (M3 Consulting) is a prime consultant and minority-owned firm based in Atlanta. Two firms, Kaleidoscope Pathways, LLC, and Point Management, are women-owned, and minority-owned businesses based in the Raleigh-Durham area. Q & A Research is a Hispanic-owned firm based in California that has previously worked with M3 Consulting on disparity study efforts.
The project team will engage the community to determine the experiences of Non-MBEs and MBEs in attempting to do business with the City and in the marketplace. We seek to gain insight and information from various perspectives by conducting one-on-one interviews, focus groups, public hearings, and community meetings. The engagement with the community will begin in the Spring of 2022.
During the public hearing and community meetings, the consultant will present information about the disparity study, answer any questions, and solicit participants for any verbal or written testimony that they would like to share about their experiences working in the marketplace. Further details including specific dates, times, and locations of the meetings will be available soon.
Please participate and make sure your insights are included as part of the process!
Materials and Feedback
The City will provide access to relevant disparity study notes, presentations, and reports below. Please check back periodically for updated documents throughout the course of the study.
Please submit any comments that you may have about your experiences working in the local marketplace, working with the City, or about the disparity study. Topic areas could include:
- Conditions in the local marketplace, including any potential barriers that businesses face in being successful or growing;
- Contracting opportunities with the City or other local government agencies;
- Business assistance programs that the City or other local agencies currently use;
- Any recommendations for additional business assistance programs that the City could consider implementing;
Your comments will be treated confidentially. They will be integrated as part of the project team’s analyses of local marketplace conditions without identifying you as the source. Comments can be sent directly to the project team at email@example.com.
For more information, please visit the Disparity Study FAQ page.