Doing Business with the Federal Government

Here is what you’ll need to know about in order to do business with the federal government. If you don’t do this you won’t get business.

Prerequisites for Government Contract Opportunities

To obtain any government contract, including schedules, contractors must complete the following registration requirements:

SAM, System for Award Management


The System for Award Management (SAM) is 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.

Registrants are required to submit detailed company information including:
General Information – Includes, but is not limited to, DUNS number (see below), CAGE Code, company name, Federal Tax Identification Number (TIN), location, receipts, employee numbers, and website address.
Corporate Information – Includes, but is not limited to, organization or business type and SBA-defined socioeconomic characteristics.
Goods and Services Information – Includes, but is not limited to, NAICS code, SIC code, Product Service (PSC) code, and Federal Supply Classification (FSC) code.
Financial Information – Includes, but is not limited to, financial institution, American Banking Association (ABA) routing number, account number, remittance address, lock box number, automated clearing house (ACH) information, and credit card information.
Point of Contact (POC) Information – Includes, but is not limited to, the primary and alternate points of contact and the electronic business, past performance, and government points of contact.
Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) Information (optional) – Includes, but is not limited to, the EDI point of contact and his or her telephone, email, and physical address. EDI Information may be provided only for businesses interested in conducting transactions through EDI.

To Register, visit the SAM, System for Award Management  web site.

Once you are done registering with SAM you’ll be asked if you wish to complete the Dynamic Small Business Search Worksheet portion and you’ll want to do this! It’s the “google” search engine for the federal market place.

You will also need the following items:

Dun & Bradstreet Number (DUNS) : A DUNS number is a unique, non-indicative 9-digit identifier issued and maintained by Dun & Bradstreet that verifies the existence of a business entity globally. Dun & Bradstreet assigns DUNS numbers for each physical location of a business. A DUNS Number is required to start your CCR registration.

To receive a DUNS number, you will need to provide the following information:
Legal Name
Headquarters name and address for your organization
Doing business as (dba), or other name by which your organization is commonly recognized
Physical Address, City, State, and Zip Code
Mailing Address (if separate from Headquarters and/or physical address)
Telephone Number
Contact Name and Title
Number of Employees at your physical location

To obtain a DUNS number go to Dun & Bradstreet or call (866) 705-5711.

Online Representations and Certifications Application (ORCA) : This online system along with CCR, Fedreg, ELPS is now part of SAM. If you were previously registered with those sites, you must re-register with SAM, here.

Federal Business Opportunities

Federal Business Opportunities: All proposed federal contracts expected to exceed $25,000 are announced on Federal Business Opportunities, or FedBizOpps . Businesses seeking government work should visit the FedBizOpps often and register there to be notified of newly posted opportunities in their industries.

Now that you have completed all of the required steps, you can now visit the Federal Small Business Programs to learn more about each federal agency and their procurement processes.