Register as a Potential Contractor


To do business with the Federal Government, businesses must register in the System for Award Management (SAM). is a public searchable database listing all potential contractors that have registered to do business with the Federal Government.  Businesses registering in SAM are required to sign in and maintain login information.

The Wisconsin Procurement Institute (WPI) provides free assistance to businesses registering in SAM. Your business / organization MUST be registered in SAM to sell to the Federal government or apply for a Federal grant.

To register in SAM on your own, review a Quick Start Guide for Contract Registrations, before you begin.

SAM Disaster Response Registry Information

In order to be included in the Disaster Response Registry, the contractor must select YES when asked if it would like to add disaster relief data in the assertions section of their SAM registration. The contractor will be asked if they require bonding when bidding on a contract and what their bonding levels are. They will also be asked in which states they can offer their products/services.


There is NO FEE to register or maintain your registration. If you get an email, text, or phone call from a company asking you to contact them right away about your registration, be cautious. If you are asked to pay money to complete or renew your registration, be cautious. These messages are not from the Federal Government. It is FREE TO REGISTER in for any entity. You engage third party vendors at your own risk.

Upon completing your SAM registration, you will be provided with the option to update or register your business in the Small Business Administration (SBA) Dynamic Small Business Search (DSBS). WPI STRONGLY recommends that all small businesses registered in SAM also register in DSBS. DSBS is a searchable database used by government agencies as well as prime contractors to conduct market research to find small businesses that may be able to compete on a Federal prime or subcontract.

For additional information on SAM registration, please contact Michael Steger at or 414-270-3600.

Beginning on May 26, 2023, there will be improvements to the start of the registration workflow. The changes may be noticeable to returning or frequent registrants, but likely won’t be significant for those registering for the first time.

First, when you start a new entity registration, you will be asked two questions that will help determine how you want to use your registration (what we call the “purpose of registration”). Next, you will see a personalized recommendation for your registration option based on how you answered the questions. Finally, you will be able to compare the other options to your recommendation and make the choice that fits your organization’s goals.

If you are updating an existing registration, you will also answer the two new questions about how you want to use your registration. Next, you will see the registration table with your current registration option highlighted. You can change that option or continue with your current option.
Whether you are registering for the first time or updating, you will only be asked the new questions once. On future updates, you won’t see the questions.

Why is this changing?
We’ve heard from new and experienced registration users that it’s hard to understand the difference between the options on the current Purpose of Registration page. The new questions and the table allow to make a personalized registration recommendation. We have simplified the language, created a way to compare registration options side by side, and added on-page help. We hope this change will help you choose the best registration option more confidently.

What else do I need to know?
• Your answers to these two questions are not recorded on your entity record and are anonymous.
• No matter how you answer the questions, you can choose any of the options you see.
• You only need to answer the questions once per entity. When you update or renew in the future, you won’t have to answer them again.

You can view and test the new pages in our test environment now. Go to, create a user account or sign in to an existing account, and start a new entity record to view the new pages.