Helping businesses find, win and perform on government contracts • maineptac.org
Do You Have an Upcoming SAM.GOV Renewal? Consider Doing it Early!
Bryan Wallace, Senior Procurement Counselor

If you have a current SAM registration that will be expiring in mid-2021(April-July) we ask that you consider submitting your annual renewal early. On April 26, 2021, the current SAM.gov system will be integrated into beta.SAM.gov. Once integrated, everything will be renamed SAM.gov. We’re being told it will be a seamless transition, yet experience tells us it’s better to be prepared. The last thing you want to do is let paperwork get in the way of winning a contract or getting paid!

You can check for your registration’s expiration date using either your DUNS number or CAGE code. Visit SAM.gov/SAM and select SEARCH RECORDS from the menu. If you would like Maine PTAC to assist with your renewal, please reach out to your counselor or email MainePTAC@emdc.org.
A Resume? Really?
Dana Delano, Procurement Counselor

Believe it or not, every business owner and their key personnel should have a professional resume on file because there are several circumstances that it will be required for government contracting. Just as a Capability Statement is your ‘resume’ for your business and is designed to articulate and highlight your company’s strengths as well provide essential information to targeted customer, your resume articulates and highlights YOUR strengths and confirms your abilities as a company representative.

I recently assisted a company with a bid on a General Services Administration construction contract. The solicitation requested a resume for both the proposed Project Manager and Project Superintendent. You must realize the Contracting Officer does not know these people or their ability to perform the work they are bidding on, so part of their bid evaluation process is evaluating these individuals to make sure they have the knowledge and experience to perform the work. The Resume is part of their vetting process. This Resume does not have to provide your high school transcripts or early work history, but it should provide relevant education, technical training and certifications, work history and project accomplishments. This helps prove to the Contracting Officer that you are capable before they award your company the bid.

As another example, if you are interested in being Certified for the SBA Woman Owned Small Business or the 8(a) Small Business programs, a personal Resume is required for the owners of the business to prove they not only have ownership but are qualified to make the daily and long-term business decisions for the company and are not just an absentee or silent owner.

If you need additional information or assistance in putting together a resume suitable for government agencies and programs, talk with your PTAC counselor, it is what we do.
Is this A Real Email?
Katie Bragg, Procurement Counselor
 
Many of you may notice that after you have successfully gotten your business into the sam.gov system, you start getting some emails that at times, cause some concern. Much of the time they tell you that you haven’t finished your registration, or that if you don’t reply to them by a certain date your CAGE code will expire, or maybe even that if you respond to the email, they will make sure that you get on a “special list” that will guarantee contracts. These are just a few examples of the emails that clients have come to us with. So, are they real, should you be concerned, what exactly do they mean?

These are typically coming from what we call a third-party company, they are NOT connected to sam.gov or PTAC, but they are a business that is trying to get you to pay them to do what the PTAC will do for free. They get on to sam.gov and they find your public information and then send a random email, stating things like, your registration isn’t complete. They are hoping that you will in turn, call them and then they will do your sam.gov renewal. What’s most interesting about these emails is that they often don’t coincide with your renewal date. They can come weeks after you register in sam.gov to months before you have to renew. And as far as guarantee of contracts, they can’t do that.

The worst part is they typically charge a lot of money for something that you can do for free.

 How should you know what to pay attention to? Some of these emails will also say in very small print that they have no affiliation with system for award management, or sam.gov. Some will say the company name, but ultimately it can be very hard to tell. If it is real, it will come about sixty days before your renewal date and again at thirty days before. And they will never tell you to call them or reply to that email, it will say login to your sam.gov account and to renew. The easiest answer is, if you aren’t sure, forward it to your PTAC counselor and they can tell you.
A Primer on Reverse Auctions
Ed Dahl, Procurement Counselor
 
Reverse auctions have both pros and cons for suppliers and buyers. Unlike traditional auctions, participants on a reverse auction place lower and lower bids, until the lowest bidder wins. They are used in supply chain transactions to reduce costs and source services or products at the lowest possible price from participating suppliers.
 
A reverse auction can provide buyers with the most competitively priced solution to their needs by pitching suppliers against each other to be the one offering the lowest-priced bid. It also streamlines the procurement process and reduces the need to send a request for proposal to each potential supplier. Reverse auctions may also save time in the procurement process.
 
Reverse auctions are generally open, enabling entrepreneurs and small business to supply firms that may otherwise overlook them, and gain access to the same bidding processes as more established or bigger firms. A successful bid can lead to more business down the line with the same buyer.
 
The primary negative issue with reverse auctions is that they are based solely on price. Unless the request for proposal is very clearly constructed and specific, the buyer may find that the lowest bid is not the one with the requisite quality or does not offer all the expected features. The costs of performing due diligence on the winning bid and managing the project falls on the buyer and may outstrip the savings. It can also negatively affect the buying organization as it may diminish their supply chain or procurement options.
 
Vendors intent on winning a reverse auction are also at risk of placing a bid that is too low for their business. Aggressive under-bidding practices can result in winning a project that cannot be completed for a given budget, souring the relationship with the client and potentially harming any chance of entering this kind of auction again. Please reach out to your Maine PTAC Counselor for more information on this and many other subjects.
Maine PTAC 40 Harlow Street, Bangor, Maine 04401 maineptac@emdc.org