For those who do not know, SAM is not the meat department guy, it is actually the acronym for the System for Awards Management, which is a part of the Government Services Administration (GSA). Lately, we have heard more about SAM because of changes made by the federal government in 2022 which had significant effects on the EEO-1 reporting process. Before we get into that more, let’s review…
Back in 2018, we wrote a blog in which we asked if you knew SAM then said if not, you should so you can certify AAP compliance by checking a box. Part of this process involved your DUNS number, which is a number assigned to businesses by the credit bureau Dun & Bradstreet that is used for financial purposes. At that time, this was all that was required for certification; however, the OFCCP was trying to find a process to identify contractors who fail to certify their Affirmative Action compliance to enhance the audit review process. And, as we well know, the OFCCP has since figured out their verification process.
Roll forward to April 2022 when the federal government - through its Office of Management and Budget (OMB) - directed federal agencies to stop using the DUNS number and to begin to use a Unique Entity Identifier (UEI) created in SAM.gov including any entities that conduct business with the federal government. This update then affected the EEO-1 reporting cycle we just completed in 2023. The instructions for filing (found at Instruction Booklet (eeocdata.org)) stated that employers (i.e., single-establishment and multi-establishment employers) that are federal contractors must instead provide UEIs.
Now that we are in 2024, as organizations that do business with federal agencies, you must familiarize yourselves with SAM to obtain this UEI. The good news is that the GSA FAQs give step-by-step instructions on how to view your UEI. Visit the GSAFSD Tier 0 Knowledge Base - How can I view my Unique Entity ID or entity registration record? to view these detailed instructions.
A special note on seeing the UEI before you go: you will only be able to view your entity within your “Workspace” if you have a role with your entity. If you do not have a role, you can follow instructions for the general search option (KB0041255) if the entity is available for public search. Only federal users and users with a role for the entity can view entities who have opted out from public view. Then there are some of you who only conduct certain types of transactions, such as reporting as a sub-awardee, you may not need to complete an entity registration but can still request a UEI by visiting SAM.gov
So, as we said in 2018, don’t get caught with an unchecked box and for 2024 we will add: get your UEI today!