GSA's new award-management system offline right after launch

The General Services Administration officially launched its System for Award Management July 30, but it's down now until Aug. 6.

According to an announcement on the Federal Service Desk website, it's experiencing performance issues. "Due to unforeseen circumstances, we have had to bring the SAM site down," the announcement states.

"We are working with the project’s contractor IBM to resolve the current issues," a GSA spokesman said Aug. 3.

SAM is a central database for federal contracting data. GSA has completed the first phase of a long and bumpy transition away from outdated information systems, combining several governmentwide databases in a bid to become more efficient.

SAM includes three Integrated Acquisition Environment systems: The Central Contractor Registration system, where companies register certain business information prior to being considered for contract awards; the Online Representations and Certifications Application, where firms submit certifications on matters such as firm size and ownership status; and the Excluded Parties List System, which is a record of the companies suspended or debarred from federal work.

In 2008, GSA began consolidating its portfolio of systems into the integrated system, although it’s hit some bumpy roads along the way. GSA did not respond to requests for more details about the problems SAM experienced.

About the Author

Matthew Weigelt is a freelance journalist who writes about acquisition and procurement.

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