SYSTEM OF AWARD MANAGEMENT (SAM): A Federal Government owned and operated free web site that consolidates the capabilities in CCR/FedReg, ORCA, and EPLS. Future phases of SAM will add the capabilities of other systems used in Federal procurement and awards processes. You need to register your business with the federal government's SAM, the primary database of vendors doing business with the federal government. Federal Acquisitions Regulations (FAR) require all prospective vendors to be registered in SAM prior to the award of a contract, basic agreement, basic ordering agreement, or blanket purchase agreement.


PROCUREMENT CLASSIFICATION CODES: Procurements are classified by Federal Supply Codes/Product Services Codes. Provides codes to describe products, services, and research and development (R&D) purchased by the federal government.

Note: The contracting official has final authority on which procurement classification code the solicitation will use, therefore you may want to search on several classification codes related to your area of interest.

NORTH AMERICAN INDUSTRY CLASSIFICATION SYSTEM (NAICS): Find the NAICS Codes for Your Company. You may also find that you need a North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code for administrative, contracting and tax purposes. The code classifies the economic sector, industry and country of your business. The NAICS industry codes define establishments based on the activities in which they are primarily engaged. NAICS codes are also used for administrative, contracting, and tax purposes.

SBA uses NAICS as a basis for its size standards. Size standards using NAICS as their basis apply to all Federal government programs, including procurement. When the Federal government intends to acquire goods or services, it identifies the NAICS code that describes the principal purpose of that procurement.

For Federal contracting purposes, you will need to identify in SAM all the NAICS codes (industries) applicable to your business.


DETERMINE YOUR BUSINESS SIZE STANDARD: A size standard, which is usually stated in number of employees or average annual receipts, represents the largest size that a business (including its subsidiaries and affiliates) may be to remain classified as a small business for SBA and federal contracting programs. The definition of "small" varies by industry.


CENTRAL CONTRACTOR REGISTRATION (CCR): The System for Award Management (SAM) is online. SAM replaces CCR/FedReg, ORCA, and EPLS.

D-U-N-S: You will need to obtain a Dun & Bradstreet D-U-N-S® Number. This is a unique nine-digit identification number for each physical location of your business. The assignment of a D-U-N-S Number is free for all businesses required to register with the federal government for contracts or grants.


FEDERAL TAX IDENTIFICATION NUMBER (TIN OR EIN): An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, and is used to identify a business entity. Generally, businesses need an EIN.


ONLINE REPRESENTATIONS AND CERTIFICATION APPLICATION (ORCA): The System for Award Management (SAM) is online. SAM replaces CCR/FedReg, ORCA, and EPLS.

EXCLUDED PARTIES LIST SYSTEM (EPLS): Provide a single comprehensive list of individuals and firms excluded by Federal government agencies from receiving federal contracts or federally approved subcontracts and from certain types of federal financial and nonfinancial assistance and benefits. The System for Award Management (SAM) is online. SAM replaces CCR/FedReg, ORCA, and EPLS.

CAGE CODE: Commercial And Government Entity (CAGE) Code is a five-character ID number used extensively within the federal government. The CAGE code is used to support a variety of mechanized systems throughout the government and provides a standardized method of identifying a given facility at a specific location. The code may be used for a facility clearance, or a pre-award survey. You do not need to have a CAGE code prior to registration as one will be automatically assigned to you as a part of your entity's registration in SAM.