Standards need to be established to for how buyers are completing their due diligence as it relates to verification of classifications. If the government worked to align its practices between systems, regulated/verified information submitted, and created a more holistic structure of classifications, the government would see better practices, overall increased compliance, and enhanced utilization of small businesses.
SBA is supposed to define what a small business is; however, purchasing agents have also been known to use SAM.gov when verifying classifications. The issue is that SAM.gov and SBA.gov have different interpretations of what a small business is, and in fact provide conflicting classification information for the same company. Also, SAM.gov allows a user to ‘self certify’ for these classifications and it doesn’t appear that there are any regulatory checks in place to ensure businesses are appropriately represented. Additionally, SAM.gov does not show all of the classifications for a business in the SAM.gov general profile and forces buyers to navigate through the Reps and Certs portion of a profile.