Department of Small and Local Business Development

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New Applicants

New DSLBD Enterprise System (DES) Launched!

Compatible with all commonly used browsers including Chrome and Safari!

Streamlined application process from 16 steps to 8 steps!

All new applicants for CBE Certification are required to register in the new DES system. Please save the username and password you create as you will need this information when returning to the system to complete your application or start another application with the Department. 


For Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about using DES, review the DES FAQs


Preparation before Starting Certification


Once you are registered and are logged into your DES profile, we recommend that you take the CBE Wizard to determine whether your business meets the local requirements for the CBE Program.  This will be an option before you begin the online application.  This step is not mandatory but provides useful information and a checklist of documents you may need to upload during the application process.


In addition to the CBE Wizard, if you would like to learn about the other certification categories that you can add during your application process, please review the CBE Program Webinar (this is not a mandatory requirement).


If you have any questions, please contact the certification division on (202) 727-3900 or at [email protected]


Apply for Certification on Behalf of Another Business


If you are applying for Certification on behalf of another business, you will need to register in the new DES and have the business seeking certification send a notice authorizing the Department to speak with you on their behalf.  The notice should be sent to [email protected].


Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Supplemental Form


If applying for the category Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE), you will need to download and complete a fillable pdf form (see attachment below). Select the attachment link.  Once the attachment opens, download the form and save it. Use Adobe Reader to open and complete the fillable pdf form.  Remember to save the form before closing it.  You will upload this form during the application process.