Stakeholder Forum Recap
On Tuesday, February 9, the U.S. General Services Administration’s Integrated Award Environment hosted an online Stakeholder Forum webinar. With almost 1,100 participants, the program focused on an introduction to the new design of beta.SAM.gov, which will launch on April 26, 2021.
A copy of the slide deck presentation [PDF - 7 MB] is available for download. A full recording of the program is available here.
The program began with an introduction and overview of the modernization project to-date. Next, participants were given a presentation about the differences between the current beta.SAM.gov design and the new design. And to wrap up, participants received a brief preview of some of the changes coming in the future when SAM.gov and beta.SAM.gov are merged into one, which will occur on May 24, 2021. There will be much more detail about that in the near future.
Please stay tuned to the IAE space on Interact for more information about all of the IAE systems, including the future migration of SAM.gov into beta.SAM.gov, as well as for details about future events.
Multi-Step Transition of SAM.gov: New Look and Feel Coming to beta.SAM.gov April 26; Systems Merge May 24
The General Services Administration launched beta.SAM.gov in 2017 as the modernized environment where the 10 Integrated Award Environment (IAE) systems will become one. To date, three IAE systems have migrated into beta.SAM.gov completely and some functionality from a fourth system has also merged into the new environment.
Now, we are preparing to merge legacy SAM.gov into the beta.SAM.gov environment. SAM.gov, IAE’s largest system, is where users register to do business with the federal government, find exclusion records, and perform other tasks. After the merger, the system will be known only as SAM.gov (no more "beta").
Phase one, scheduled for April 26, 2021, will change the look and feel of beta.SAM.gov to prepare for the SAM.gov merge that will happen a few weeks later. The new look and feel will remain when the two systems merge. Essentially, we’re giving our current beta.SAM.gov users a head start and a chance to get used to the new design before SAM.gov functionality migrates over.
Phase two, scheduled for May 24, 2021, will migrate the functionality of SAM.gov into beta.SAM.gov (keeping the new design). The term "beta" will be retired, and there will be only one SAM.gov. This change affects all SAM.gov users.
After May 24, SAM.gov users will see a home page that enables them to perform tasks currently found at beta.SAM.gov such as searching for contract opportunities, finding wage determinations, and more, as well as the things they can do at SAM.gov today - all under a single sign-on.
More About the New Look for beta.SAM.gov Coming April 26
We are excited to introduce the new beta.SAM.gov experience coming April 26, 2021. Functionality within the system is not changing (yet!).
Users will notice beta.SAM.gov’s home page, help pages, and search all have a new design built to address the feedback we have heard from our users. The main menu also will have a new look and feel that will make the selections (that aren’t changing) easier to find. The feedback tool (which we rely on for input from our users) will move to the footer, providing a consistent location for every page throughout the system.
We are rolling out the new design of these key parts of beta.SAM.gov in preparation for and in conjunction with the upcoming transition of current (or legacy) SAM.gov into beta.SAM.gov. SAM.gov will transition on May 24, 2021, at which time the two merged systems will be known only as SAM.gov (the "beta" is being retired).
The new design provides a dedicated landing page or "home" for each of the different functions within the system (what we call "domains") such as wage determinations, contract opportunities, or assistance listings. On May 24, entity registrations (SAM.gov) will be the newest domain. These new landing pages provide a helpful starting point for users interested in any specific domain.
Additionally, we also continue to enhance the integrated system’s search capabilities. The new design makes it easier to find advanced filters for each domain and improves the usability of the date filters. We've also made it easier to see what filters are available for each domain. The new design incorporates significant user feedback from our feedback tool and numerous discussions with stakeholders.
The original (current) design of beta.SAM.gov hasn’t changed since it’s initial launch in August 2017. In the three-plus years since launch, we have integrated several legacy IAE systems and other functionality into beta.SAM.gov, but haven’t changed the design, until now.
April’s new design adheres to new U.S. Web Design System and GSA standards for digital experiences. Those standards help agencies to streamline content and are secure, responsive, accessible, and consistent.
The new design of our home page, help, and search are the first steps in introducing our new SAM.gov design standards. As we continue to make improvements and add functionality, we will be further applying the most recent standards across our system.
New Security Offering for SAM.gov for Entity Administrators Available May 24
As with all of the IAE systems, security for SAM.gov is always paramount. With that in mind, we will be offering access to new security features in SAM.gov on May 24, 2021.
The new security enhancements - called identity proofing - will be voluntary (and recommended) at first, and will become mandatory in fiscal year 2022.
By introducing identity proofing, we are adding a layer of security that protects you, your entity, and the government by making it more difficult for someone to gain unauthorized access to your entity registration account. Your entity registration contains sensitive data that, if exposed, could cause harm or damage to your entity. Verifying the identity of entity administrators helps everyone ensure that entity data remains in the right hands.
Identity proofing will be for users who manage SAM.gov registrations. We will begin validating the identity of each entity administrator in SAM.gov as an optional benefit at first. However, we recommend that all existing entity administrators become familiar with and take advantage of this added level of security as soon as possible. Early adopters will have the opportunity to provide feedback that will help us improve the process moving forward.
After May 24, 2021, users will be able to initiate the identity proofing process directly from SAM.gov. Those who verify early will be well prepared once identity proofing is fully required in FY22.
Managed and run by login.gov, the identity proofing process will collect, validate, and verify information about a person. Entity administrators will be asked to upload a photograph of their state-issued photo identification, provide their social security number, and provide a valid phone number. To learn more about how the process works and how data is secured, visit Login Security.
A PDF of this page is available at this link [PDF - 176 KB]
SAM.gov to be integrated into beta.SAM.gov environment on April 26, 2021
GSA’s Integrated Award Environment (IAE) program is consolidating what were recently many separate systems into one place, currently called beta.SAM.gov. On April 26, 2021, the functionalities of current SAM.gov will be integrated into the modernized beta.SAM.gov environment. Once integrated, the environment will be renamed SAM.gov and the term beta will be retired.
This transition aligns with GSA’s commitment to modernize the IAE systems to improve the user experience. We have held focus groups within and outside the government to learn more about what works for our various users, and the changes coming have been planned with their feedback in mind.
After successfully integrating CFDA.gov (assistance listings), WDOL.gov (wage determinations), FBO.gov (contract opportunity listings), and the contract data reports functionality from FPDS.gov, we’re looking forward to bringing you this next transition.
While the core data and functionality of the systems aren’t changing, there will be a new look and feel for much of that functionality. We will be sharing updates regularly about what changes to expect with the SAM.gov integration and more details about future user testing opportunities.
The Federal Service Desk has a New Login and a New Look
The Federal Service Desk (FSD.gov) is the free service to help our system users with issues ranging from a lost or forgotten password to more complex issues with a specific system. On December 8, the FSD implemented two changes: a new look and feel and the use of multifactor authentication (MFA) via login.gov.
The new look is more consistent with our modernization effort while maintaining all the service options that our customers rely on. To help ease the transition to this new FSD.gov layout, users can view tours of the site. Tours are available after you log in. You will find them in the upper right-hand corner of the FSD.gov homepage.
You do not need to log in to browse the site. However, if you want to open a service ticket online or chat with a live agent, you do need to create a user account and log in using MFA provided by login.gov. Follow the IAE on Interact for more information and the latest updates.
Product Service Codes (PSCs) Have Been Updated to Align with the New PSC Manual Release
Product Service Codes (PSCs) classify products, services, and research and development items purchased by the federal government. The IAE recently deployed changes to PSCs throughout the IAE systems. These PSC changes:
- Activated 155 new research and development (R&D) PSCs while end-dating 721 R&D PSCs
- Activated 40 new information technology PSCs while end-dating 68 IT PSCs
- Activated two product codes--PSC 6835 (new) and PSC 6830 (revised)
- Renamed PSC Q901 to Healthcare Environmental Cleaning from Aseptic Housekeeping Services
Throughout IAE systems, including beta.SAM.gov, SAM.gov, and FPDS.gov, updates to the PSC codes have been implemented. Users will need to utilize the new PSCs for system interfaces, APIs, extracts, search filters, and data entry processes.
Users should update their saved searches, search filters, and followed items to reflect the updated PSC codes. Users of the PSC application programming interface (API), which provides third-party applications access to the PSC data, should check the updated API documentation to ensure your submissions are accurate. You can view the documentation at open.gsa.gov/api/PSC-Public-API.
The most recent version of the PSC Manual and supporting documentation can be found at acquisition.gov/PSC_Manual.
A PDF of this page is available at this link [PDF - 154 KB].
Government to Transition from DUNS Number to Unique Entity Identifier in 2022
A new unique entity identifier generated by the System for Award Management (SAM) will replace the proprietary D-U-N-S® (DUNS) number as the official identifier for entities doing business with the federal government. The deadline for this change has been extended. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) directed agencies to complete their transition to using the SAM-generated unique entity identifier (unique entity ID or UEI) by April 2022. GSA will be contracting with Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) to ensure full continuity of services—including DUNS number assignment, monitoring, and validation of entity uniqueness—during the extended transition period.
Current active registrants will have their UEI generated within SAM.gov before the transition; there is no action entities need to take to get a new UEI. In addition, any entity coming to SAM.gov to register for the first time will have their UEI generated for them as part of the registration process.
The benefits from this change include reducing the burden on registrants, who will no longer be required to acquire an identifier from a third party. In addition, by separating the government requirement for a UEI from the government requirement to validate that the entity is unique, the government introduced competitiveness into entity validation services. And, if an entity encounters an issue with their registration or their UEI, they will only need to engage with a single helpdesk, the Federal Service Desk (FSD).
The transition will be completed in phases with interim milestones, and, as we move through this transition, the IAE team will continue to communicate about the status of the change in this forum to help inform system users and other interested parties.
FPDS contract data reports are now available only at beta.SAM.gov
The IAE is pleased to announce that the reports function of FPDS completed the transition into the beta.SAM.gov Data Bank on October 17, 2020—the reports module in FPDS.gov has retired. Now, beta.SAM.gov is the only place to create and run contract data reports. Only the reports function transitioned—the rest of FPDS (search, data entry) remains in place. This transition concludes a successful soft launch and agile iterative improvement process that began in March, 2020.
To help ease the change, we have worked with federal government and industry users to develop and hone training videos, reference guides, and FAQs that can help both new and experienced reports users. This series of tutorial videos to help new and experienced users alike learn to use ad hoc reports in beta.SAM.gov:
Static reports like National Interest Action reports (including the bi-weekly COVID-19 report), the annual Small Business Goaling Reports, the annual Top 100 Contractor Reports, and other periodic reports of government-wide data, remain publicly available on the beta.SAM.gov Static Reports page.
We appreciate your feedback and support in the process of building beta.SAM.gov. It’s been a truly collaborative effort among the IAE team, our users, and our stakeholders, and this collaboration continues as we integrate reports capabilities from FPDS. The cutover was initially planned for mid-March, but we got the feedback that you needed more time. In response, we operated the two systems in parallel for seven months, giving you time to learn the new tool and giving us time to make improvements. We hope you’ll continue telling us what you think and what you need every step of the way.
A PDF of this page is available at this link [PDF - 214 KB].
Contract Data Reports Integration Extension
The IAE is pleased to announce that the reports function of FPDS is slated to complete the transition into beta.SAM.gov on October 17, 2020. At that time, beta.SAM.gov will be the only place to create and run contract data reports and the reports module in FPDS.gov will be retired. Only the FPDS reports function is transitioning--the rest of FPDS will remain in place. This transition concludes a successful soft launch and agile iterative improvement process that began in March 2020.
Prior to October 17, 2020, while reports are available in both places, we encourage all users to become familiar with contract data reports in beta.SAM.gov. Make sure to create and run reports in beta.SAM.gov and use the feedback button in beta.SAM.gov to let us know what you think. You also should go to your reports history to see any ad hoc reports that were migrated from FPDS.gov.
To help ease the change we have worked with users throughout the federal government and industry to develop and hone training videos, reference guides, and FAQs that can help both new and experienced reports users.
We recommend that new users start with:
Experienced users should review the previously mentioned resources, as well as:
We appreciate your feedback and support in the process of building beta.SAM.gov. It’s been a truly collaborative effort among the IAE team, our users, and our stakeholders, and this collaboration continues as we integrate reports capabilities from FPDS. We got the feedback that you needed more time, and we hope you’ll continue telling us what you think and what you need every step of the way.
Expanded Search Capabilities on SAM.gov
Improvements to the features and functionalities of SAM.gov are delivered on a continual basis. Because we use the agile process for development, we are able to adapt quickly to our users’ needs. We have expanded the search capability in SAM.gov to help you find more relevant search results. When you enter two or more words as a phrase, the search tool will look for that phrase and prioritize results by relevance. Learn more about this updated feature on Interact.
A PDF of this page is available at this link [PDF - 142 KB].