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Business Finance

D-U-N-S Number: do you know your business’ credit score?

Did you know your business has a credit score? Without obtaining a D-U-N-S Number, you may not be getting the credit you deserve, and the government requires it for all contracts.

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A D-U-N-S Number is your business’ credit score

Your credit score plays a factor in several facets of your life, and can determine your eligibility to get a home, a loan, and in some cases, a job. When you’re starting a business or seeking funding, some lenders may look at your personal credit score to determine your likelihood of credibility, but more often than not, they will look at your business’s credit score instead.

In order to establish record of your business credit, you will have sign up for it, and most businesses choose to do this by signing up for a D-U-N-S number. This nine digit number serves as identification of your business to lenders and other financial institutions.

Additionally, if you’re planning to submit a bid for a U.S. federal government contract, you are required to sign up for a D-U-N-S number through Dun & Bradstreet, in order to be eligible for consideration. The government agencies and organizations that assign government contracts often have to go through strict approval processes when selecting who the contract will be awarded to.

A D-U-N-S number helps standardize the candidate pool somewhat by boiling down key business factors into a single scale that all businesses can be measured against. If your business already has a D-U-N-S number, that’s less work that your staff has to do when trying to win a bid.

How a D-U-N-S number can benefit your business

But more importantly than meeting requirements of lenders, obtaining a D-U-N-S number can be beneficial for your business within a short period of time. While some of the most successful business owners have great ideas and are very persuasive, financial lenders learn to look past marketing speak and presentations, and focus strictly on financial credibility; and if you’re business doesn’t have a proven financial track record, it’s less likely to be approved for funding.

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So even if you’re far off from seeking funding, sign up for a D-U-N-S number as early as possible in order to start tracking transactions so that you will have these things on record when you are ready to speak with investors or other lenders.

With this number, banks and other lenders can more easily obtain your financial history as it is compiled and housed in one centralized location, and therefore can more quickly make decisions on your funding requests. Obtaining a faster decision allows your business to quickly seek alternative sources if your request is denied, or promptly complete outstanding paperwork or additional necessary requirements needed before your funds can be released.

Destiny Bennett is a journalist who has earned double communications' degrees in Journalism and Public Relations, as well as a certification in Business from The University of Texas at Austin. She has written stories for AustinWoman Magazine as well as various University of Texas publications and enjoys the art of telling a story. Her interests include finance, technology, social media...and watching HGTV religiously.

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