Doing Business with the City

Interested in doing business with the City? Register for both the Consultant Roster and the Online Business Directory using a single registration system. See also our Doing Business with the City booklet.

Online Business Directory

The City or contractors seeking partners/teams use the City's Online Business Directory (OBD) when seeking companies for work. When registering in the OBD, you can indicate your business expertise and status as a women- or minority-owned business (if applicable) and register for the City's Consultant Roster. 

Consultant Roster

City departments may also use the City's Consultant Roster to select a consultant for a project. City departments may use the roster to select companies for projects valued at $305,000 or less. Depending on the project, the department may use any consultant or may use a solicitation process to select the most qualified. 

Introducing your company to the City

For products and routine services, call City Purchasing and Contracting Services (CPCS) at 206-684-0444. Ask for the buyer who specializes in your product. He or she can tell you about current contracts for your product and how much is spent, provide a copy of the contract, let you know when we may re-solicit and refer you to City staff that might be interested in your product or service. Sign up to receive information through the City blog at  

For construction and consultant contracts, City capital departments have projections and background on upcoming projects posted on their websites. You may contact CPCS at 206-684-0444 to be referred to City department staff for those upcoming bid opportunities.

First Friday drop-in training

At these "101" sessions, we provide information to vendors, consultants and contractors on how to do business with the City including tips on bidding, explanations of procedures and forms and an opportunity to meet the buyer and program administrator for your commodity or specialty. For more details and to confirm that there have been no unexpected scheduling changes, please check The Buy Line blog

Frequently Asked Questions

The City of Seattle Consultant Roster Program is an internet-based program that features numerous categories of consultant services routinely utilized by City departments. Consultants who wish to do business with the City may apply to one or more of these categories by completing and submitting an application online. Applicants who adequately demonstrate experience and capability in a category will be added to the Consultant Roster. City departments may use any approved consultant in the Consultant Roster Program for projects totaling $277,000 or less. Departments will select consultants based on their expertise and abilities outlined in their applications. While all departments make an effort to rotate through the consultants approved for a particular category, there is no guarantee of work for approved consultants.

Search the roster for approved consultants by category

Interested consultants may apply to the Consultant Roster Program (or apply for additional categories) at any time. The Department of Finance and Administrative Services will evaluate new applications and designate approved consultants, based upon the evaluation outcomes. The City generally evaluates new applications monthly, although the City reserves the right to perform evaluations more or less frequently, as needed. Applicants will be notified of the evaluation outcomes by e-mail.

Search the roster for approved consultants by category

You can apply online. Some reminders:

  • You will be asked to complete numerous application pages, in which you will need specific information about your business, your business history, your work history, and your personnel history. Names, addresses, phone numbers, education history and professional license and certification information will be required at certain points throughout this application. You should have this information readily available before you start the application.
  • If you must exit the application before completing it, you may hit the "SAVE CHANGES AND EXIT" button on the bottom of any application page at any time. Once you hit this button, you will be directed to a screen with details on how to return and edit your application at a later time (Do not leave the application in the middle of filling out a form. If you do, the information will be lost. If you need to stop working on the application for some reason, you must complete the page you are in before exiting. If you are prompted to enter information that you do not have, before exiting, you may enter UNKNOWN in the field before proceeding and return to edit it later).
  • If you cannot complete a page within 20 minutes, you should click on the "SAVE PAGE AND CONTINUE" or the "SAVE CHANGES AND EXIT" buttons at the bottom of the application page. Otherwise, the database will "time out" and you will lose the information you have entered.
  • DO NOT USE YOUR BROWSER'S "BACK" OR "FORWARD button." Doing so may produce database errors that will require deletion of your application. There are numerous points in the application process to REVIEW, EDIT or UPDATE information you have already entered. Before your final submittal, you will be prompted to go back and make any necessary changes to your application. (Do not leave the application in the middle of filling out a form. If you do, the information will be lost. If you need to stop working on the application for some reason, simply complete the area of the form you are working on and hit "SAVE CHANGES AND EXIT." If you are prompted to enter information that you do not have, enter "unknown" in the field before proceeding and return to edit it later).
  • This application uses COOKIES to track the flow of information from page to page. Before starting the application, please enable your cookies. If you did not receive an error message on the start page, Then you can assume your cookies are enabled.

Click here to begin your application

Just login to your account and look for the grey box on the left, near the top of the screen. The status of your application is in the "Status" column of that grey box. Applications will generally be processed within 3-4 weeks. You will be notified via email once your application review is complete. Want to check it's status right now? You can by clicking here.

There are currently 79 different categories in the Consultant Roster Program. Please review the list of categories of service to find where your business expertise fits best. The list of categories of service will also be available to view prior to accessing the category applications. See the list of all the categories.

Consultants are strongly encouraged to apply online. Hard-copy applications may be granted on a case-by-case basis, and at the discretion of the Consultant Roster Program Coordinator. To request a hard-copy application, submit an email request.