Market Insights

How a Local Cyber Contractor Kept its Employees After Losing a Federal Contract

By Jeannette E. Garcia  –  Reporter, San Antonio Business Journal

It was quick action that allowed CNF Technologies Corp. to keep its employees involved in a defense contract when it was quickly terminated, it’s CEO Roxanne Ramirez told the Business Journal.

That group consisted of 14 employees at CNF and around nine employees from the prime contractor.

It was roughly three weeks ago when Jason Garcia, CNF’s executive director of mission engineering and integration, got a call from an unnamed prime contractor letting CNF know that the federal government had shut down a contract that CNF was on for more than 10 years. Both the prime contractor and CNF had less than two weeks before roughly 23 people would be out of a job.

That’s when Garcia jumped into action to try and make a plan to try and retain as many of the employees as possible.

“I worked over the weekend, made a lot of phone calls, held a lot of meetings with different in-house project managers and directors. By Monday morning, I already had a plan together that was getting approved by senior leadership on Tuesday,” Garcia said.

Through that plan, the San Antonio-based cybersecurity federal contractor was able to retain all of its employees that were working on that contract, as well as place three employees from the prime contractor.

“As soon as the government said ‘give us your tech cards and you’re out the door,’ we took our people, put them in existing contracts that Jason has right now that we’re working on,” Ramirez said.

CNF also created three specific positions in their corporate headquarters to place some of these employees, Garcia said. CNF was not always a subcontractor on this contract, and it is very close to Ramirez’s heart, she said.

The contract was a five-year, $10 million contract that opened up CNF to software development, network security, engineering, and architecting, testing and quality assurance and system accreditation. It also opened up CNF to worldwide impact, Garcia said.

In 2014, CNF graduated from the SBA 8(a) program, but teamed up with a small business federal contractor to obtain the contract as a subcontractor in 2016.