After rampant complaints about performance issues the Department of Defense recently announced it will no longer require prospective contractors to register online through the System for Award Management (SAM).
The move came in response to concerns that contractors would begin to use issues with the site as a basis for contracting disputes. An Aug. 21 memo from Richard Ginman, the director of defense procurement and acquisition policy, noted that the move is temporary and will give the GSA time to address issues with the site. SAM was activated July 29, and at the time of launch was already several months behind schedule. Immediately contractors began complaining about issues with registration and the basic functioning of the site, as well as customer service issues.
SAM is intended to be GSA’s answer to a system of outdated information systems and duplicate efforts across government agencies. It’s another example of government seeking to solve the “big data” problem – a problem that has resulted in a surge in new contract opportunities for those with services and solutions for wrangling data and moving it to the cloud.
Just how challenging the proposition of merging competing and antiquated systems can be is evidenced by the launch and subsequent stalling of SAM. Ultimately, SAM is intended to allow contractors to register and submit certifications on matters of company size and ownership status, and will be required before being allowed to bid on government work. But for now, and until the glitches are fixed, the Department of Defense is saying companies will have a reprieve in being registered on the site until they actually submit their first invoice.
Have you had issues registering at SAM.gov?
Lindy Kyzer is the editor of ClearanceJobs.com. She loves cybersecurity, social media, and the U.S. military. Have a conference, tip, or story idea to share? Email email@example.com.