Central Contractors Registration
CCR Information System
Under the provisions of the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 (44 U.S.C. Chapter 35), the Regulatory Secretariat submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) a request to review and approve an emergency new information collection requirement regarding Central Contractor Registration (CCR) Requirements for Prime Grant Recipients. Then in November 1, 2003 the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) amended the 2001-16 FAR policy requiring contractors to register in the CCR database prior to award of a contract or agreement.
The CCR system, is the location-based information systems for electronically monitoring offenders who may have defrauded the government in the past. CCR is the primary registrant database for the U.S. Federal Government awards. The purpose of this system is to verify that all vendors/contractors are able to do business with the federal government. Government agencies using a government purchase card and vendors accepting the government purchase card for purchase are considered the end users of CCR. Both current and potential federal government registrants are required to register in CCR in order to be awarded contracts by the federal government. Registrants are required to complete a one-time registration to provide basic information relevant to procurement and financial transactions. (Federal Acquisition Regulation Subpart 4.1102-Central Contract Registration, 2010, p.1).
CCR collects, validates, stores, and disseminates data in support of agency acquisition missions, including Federal agency contract assistance and electronically shares the secure and encrypted data with the federal agencies finance offices to facilitate paperless payments through electronic funds transfer (EFT). Additionally, CCR shares the data with federal government procurement and electronic business systems. Prior to this system being in place many agencies wasted time and money and today its takes seconds to account for accountability.
According to several federal agencies for example the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) policy FAR 4.1102 (November 1, 2003), interested contractors desiring to do business with the federal government are required to register in the CCR database prior to being awarded a contract with the government (http://acquisition/compact/far/FAC/fac01016.pdf). The Federal Acquisition Circular (FAC) 2001-16 and The Defense Federal Acquisition Regulations Supplement (DFARS) policy, DFARS 204.7302 is in agreement with the FAR policy requiring interested contractors to register in the CCR database prior to being awarded a contract with the government. Interested organizations applying for grants and cooperative agreements from the federal government through Grants.gov must register in CCR; however, those applying for federal assistance awards are not required to register in
CCR unless its required by that federal agency. Also prime contractors are not required to have their subcontractors register in CCR but if they want to bid directly for contracts with the federal government, it then will require them to do so.
This information system called CCR has two users one is government agencies to include the Veterans Affairs who I work for and use CCR on a daily basis and the other user is the vendor. This system allows for electronic interfacing with automated procurement or financial system functions in order to complete the operations mission. The Veterans Health Administration Handbook 1730.01 defines the responsibilities of the government employee cardholder such as myself the scope and duties for managing VHAs Government Card Program. The Government Purchase Card can only be used by vendors who are registered in the CCR system, this ensures orders and payments are easily matched with data entered into the system by the vendor that accepts government card for payments and that Federal Procurement Data System (FPDS) for VHA and individual stations report accurate data as required by the VHA Handbook. The Electronic Funds Transfer and assignment of claims as stated in the FAR policy manual 52.232-33 Paragraph G generally states the requirements apply to the assignees as if it were the contractor who has been granted a contract with the federal government. If the vendor does not accept a payment with a government purchase card, then other methods will need to be used; however, the preferred form of payment is with a government purchase card.
Inputs and Information Outputs.
The organization uses the IS system inputs and outputs to accomplish operational objectives. Anyone desiring to do business with the government must
register in the CCR system. This includes all sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships and any government organizations. Prior to registering in the CCR system, you must have a Data Universal Number System (DUNS) to begin the registration process. The DUNS number is a nine digit identification number provided by the commercial company D & B. If requested over the phone it takes about ten minutes and doesnt cost anything. Request over the internet are completed within twenty-four hours. Once the DUNS has been issued, it will become available in the CCR system within forty-eight hours.
The DUNS number helps to identify registrants whether they have been registered more than once in the CCR system and under different names helping to identify two separate bank accounts should this occur, ensuring that each registrant has a separate DUNS number. For additional information support on D & B and DUNS call 1-866-705-5711 or access their website at http://fedgov.dnb.com/webform
The Commercial and Government Entity Code (CAGE) is a five digit number used within the federal government. This code is used to support a variety of systems used throughout the government providing ta standardized procedure to distinguish one facility from the other.
The CCR system will verify to see if each separate registrant has a CAGE code
for each physical location and separate division at the same location. This process is similar to the DUNS as well as its purpose. For additional assistance one may contact 1-866-606-8220 or access their website at http://bpn.gov/bincs/beginsearch.asp.
Once youve obtained both access the CCR website to complete the registration at http://www.ccr.gov. Under the ???Create New Registration??? section, click on ???Start New Registration??? here you will be ask to include your DUNS#.
The next step includes creating a user account and the last step involves completing and submitting the online registration. The process takes approximately one hour to complete. Once your registration is complete the turn around time for processing takes between three and five days. When the registrants become active the CCR user will receive an welcome e-mail.
To initiate any changes to your CCR account go to CCRs home page, log in with your user id and password and shortly you will be directed to your ???Manage
Registration??? page. Under the CCR registrations link to your account section select update/renew for the DUNS number of the record you wish to change. Make the changes and click validate/save data to register the updates in the system. Once you receive an e-mail, this notifies you registration complete. To submit a renewal with no changes then follow the same steps listed.
Should you need to delete an active registration log in at the CCR webpage go
under the CCR registration linking to your account section, select update/renew for the registrants you wish to delete. Select delete registration located at the top of the page.
Organization Usage and Impact
For the maintenance of monitoring offenders who may have defrauded the government in the past. The Veteran Affairs (VA) and vendors must utilize the CCR system for collecting, validating, storing and disseminating data in support of VHAs mission including Federal agency contract assistance and electronically shares the secure and encrypted data with the federal agencies finance offices to facilitate paperless payments through electronic funds transfer (EFT). Additionally, CCR shares the data with federal government procurement and electronic business systems.
There is a two-sided impact to any information system that becomes utilized to accomplish operational objectives. On the positive side, the implementation and use of the CCR system ensures purchases holder and vendors adhere to VA policies for managing VHAs Government Purchase Card Program. To receive the greatest cost benefits to the government the card holders should verify if the vendor is in the CCR system meeting the highest ethical standards in connection with the program. This also helps the VA card holders and vendor to prevent compromising of any policies and or procedures enforced by the VHA Handbook. The negative impact of this system would have to be the viewing of the application in the Electronic Research Administration (eRA
Commons system). The eRA Commons is an online interface where grant applicants, grantees and federal staff at NIH and grantor agencies can access and share administrative information relating to research grants.
Once any eRA identified errors have been addressed and the assembled application has been created in the eRA Commons, the PD/PI and the Authorized Organization Representative/Signing Official (AOR/SO) have two weekdays (Monday and Friday, excluding federal holidays) to view the assembled application before it automatically moves forward to National Institute of Health (NIH) for further processing.
Hardware and Software.
This information systems key hardware of CCR uses SQL as known as Oracle server. This SQL server component allows the scheduling of periodic activities of Microsoft SQL Server and/or notification of system administrators of problems that occurred with the server. This server component has room for jobs, alerts, and operators. The SQL server is able to communicate to client application through SQL updates and vice versa.
The key software component of Central Contractor Registration an external
system uses Adobe Reader software version 8.1.3 or higher to complete the new forms. The rolling over of these components saves the user from re-keying information.
Even though this superb information system has improved the agencies
productivity saving time and money over the years from having to verify vendors taking weeks and days, it now takes the agencies seconds to account for accountability. However with any system, there will be shortfalls that call for attention to fulfilling the operations mission.
On 9/15/2010, I contacted the Federal Service Disk (FSD) who answer questions regarding the CCR Users Guide and spoke with Mr. Thomas Rice. I asked what Mr. Rice what recommendations and feedback does FSD receive to better service all users involved with the CCR system. Mr. Rice mentioned the number one complaint received is the first time user lengthy registration process. This process can takes 1hour and 30 minutes to complete on-line to receive validation can take up to 3 to 5 days. If done over the phone, the turnaround time is 24 hours. Suggestion is to receive validation within 24 hours should you decide to register over the phone or on-line. The second complaint is the run around with the DUNS systems, should the vendor have a problem with registration instead of contacting the DUNS helpdesk, DUNS will ask you to contact the D& B help desk. Suggestions is for DUNS to handle
all DUNS questions and concerns. The third recommendation is releasing format and usability to the general public, value of data and quality. The last recommendation is for the vendor to continue to receive correspondence in the mail notifying them of the yearly registration instead of e-mails only.
Todays CCR data system compare to one in the past is the most accurate single
validated source of data on vendors/contractors doing business with the government. This information systems gives all government agencies with a Government Purchase Card the capabilities to verify both current and potential federal government registration in seconds oppose to days and weeks monitoring offenders who may have defrauded the government in the past saving the federal government time and money.
Central Contractors Registration Users Guide. (2010). Retrieved August, 15, 2010, from http://www.diversifynevada.com/documents/CCR%20Handbook%202- 2010.pdf
Department of Veteran Affairs: VHA Handbook. (2008). Use and Management of the Government Purchase Card Program.
T. Rice (personal communication, September 13, 2010)