Introduction to SAM Roles

SAM is a roles based system.  Roles allow you to access additional functionality in SAM and perform actions on behalf of an entity.  Just because you have an account does not mean you can perform certain functions.

As you read this user guide (and navigate the site), keep in mind that the term entity is used generically to mean anything that you can have a role with and perform an action on behalf of in SAM.  There are several types of entities in SAM; however, they are generally grouped into two categories: non-Federal Government and Federal Government.

Non-Federal Government entities in SAM include businesses, organizations, state governments, local governments, tribal governments, and foreign governments.  For a non-Federal Government entity to exist in SAM, it must have an Entity Management registration (also referred to as an entity registration).  An active Entity Management Registration is the registration that makes you eligible for contracts or grants and Federal assistance.  A non-Federal Government entity cannot make roles available to its employees without an Entity Management registration

Federal Government entities include Departments, Agencies, and Offices (and in the case of DoD, Major Commands and Sub-Commands).  Collectively they are referred to as levels on SAM’s Federal Government hierarchy.  Only a limited amount of information (like name and address) is stored for entities (i.e. levels) on the Federal Government hierarchy.  A Federal Government entity can also have an Entity Management registration (also referred to as an entity registration) which makes it eligible for contracts, grants/Federal assistance awards, or Intra-Governmental Transactions (IGT).  In such cases the Entity Management registration is tied to the entry on the hierarchy (i.e., the levels) and is considered supplemental information. For example, if a bureau under the Department of the Interior has a place (i.e., a level) on the Federal Government hierarchy, and that bureau was also able to bid on contracts, then that registration information would be appended onto the hierarchy entry.

Both Federal Government and non-Federal Government entities have an organizational hierarchy.  Depending on your role, you may be able to perform actions on behalf of children entities in your organization’s hierarchy.  For instance if you are assigned an administrator role at the highest level entity in your hierarchy, you can assign roles at any lower level entities in the hierarchy.

SAM contains its own Federal Government hierarchy with seven levels:

  • Department
  • Agency/Bureau
  • Major Command – DoD Only
  • Sub-Command 1 – DoD Only
  • Sub-Command 2 – DoD Only
  • Sub-Command 3 – DoD Only
  • Office

For non-Federal Government entities, SAM constructs the organization structure based on hierarchy information provided by Dun and Bradstreet’s (D&B).

Depending on which roles you have, you can:

  • Create/edit/update/renew/delete your entity’s registration to pursue Federal awards.
  • Create/edit/update/renew/delete your entity’s Intra-Governmental Transaction (IGT) registration.
  • Assign/remove users’ roles with your entity. NOTE: The Administrator Role in SAM has a robust set of permissions that they can perform for their entity.  These permissions are detailed and further explained in Section 4 of this document.
  • Create/edit exclusion records
  • Submit requests to the Help Desk to create/edit/move Offices on your agency’s hierarchy

You can have multiple roles in SAM and you can also have roles with multiple entities.  However as a general rule, you cannot have roles with both Federal Government entities and non-Federal Government entities.