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Criteria for Certification


  • Applicant company must be at least fifty-one percent (51%) owned and controlled by one or more women who are U.S. citizens or permanent legal residents, or in the case of any publicly-owned business, at least fifty-one percent (51%) of the equity of which is owned and controlled by one or more women who are U.S. citizens or permanent legal residents
  • Management and daily operation is controlled by one or more of the women.
  • WBENC uses a two part process to ensure that the applicant company meets the WBENC Standards. This will include a thorough review of the documentation presented and a site visit interview with the female owner(s).
  • Click here for a copy of the Standards and Procedures used to determine certification (recommended reading).

Application Instructions:

To expedite the efficient handling of your application, please read all of these instructions before you begin the online application.

NOTE: This application will become your company’s resume once certification is granted. Please type in upper and lower case letters and be as thorough as possible.

Register using the female owner’s email address.

  • The owner’s complete e-mail address will be automatically assigned as the username for the application.
  • Create a password. Save your username and password, it will be needed once certification is granted to access your application record(s) and certificate.
  • Before the application is accessible, you must answer pre-qualifying questions in order to determine if the minimum requirements for certification are met.
  • The application processing page will open.
  • You may complete the processing section in any order; however, ALL must be completed before you are able to sign and submit the application.
  • To prevent loss of data entered, please click Save Draft if you need to exit the system.
  • The status bar at the top of the page will indicate what percentage of the application has been completed.
  • As each section is completed, a green check mark will be visible and the status will be updated from Incomplete to Complete.
  • Before the application can be submitted, the system will ask if the nonrefundable processing fee will be paid using a credit card or check. Upon answering the questions, you will be allowed to submit the application. NOTE: If your company elects to mail in a check, processing will not begin until the payment has been received by your assigned Regional Partner Organization.
  • DO NOT SIGN/SUBMIT the application until it has been reviewed for accuracy by the female owner. Once the application is submitted, edits to data will not be permitted.

As a reminder, please save the username and password, as both will be needed once certification is granted.

Go to to begin the online application