1. What resources are available for me and my vendors?
  2. What language in the RFR Template has changed?
  3. What flexibility does the SSST have with this language / process?
  4. What is the impact on current contracts?
  5. How do we organize the reporting process?
  6. Are signatures on the forms required?
  7. Can we accept electronic signature?
  8. What do I need to do if a prime contractor needs to change their SDP partner?
  9. Do we still need to get copies of the certification letters and MOU letters from the prime contractors or their partners?

  1. What resources are available for me and my vendors?
    • All documents may be found at the Supplier Diversity Program website at www.mass.gov/sdp
      • Policy
      • Policy Guidelines
      • Webcast
      • Forms
      • FAQ’s
  2. What language in the RFR Template has changed?
  3. What flexibility does the SSST have with this language / process?
    • Can we ask for Form #1 and Form #2 at the same time as part of the bid? Yes, the SSST may choose to ask for both forms; however, your RFR and form language must be updated to reflect clear instructions.
    • Can we award more than 10% of the total evaluation points? Yes, the SSST can always award more than 10% of the total points to SDP, but it may never be less than 10% for large procurements.
    • What if an awarded contractor does not have any certified partners identified within 30 days of contract award? There may be times when contractors do not have certified partners identified at the start of the contract term.  The SSST and SSSL should work with the prime contractor to help identify potential business to business relationships their company may need over the course of the contract.  Departments should also direct contractors looking for certified partners to the SDO webpages at www.mass.gov/sdo for assistance in finding a compatible certified partner. Departments should clearly inform the contractor that they are contractually obligated to meet their SDP percentage of sales commitment by partnering with certified businesses on an annual basis.  Spending with certified partners must be documented on a quarterly (or whatever term required in the RFR) basis, and Departments reserve the right to verify stated expenditures with the certified businesses.  Contractors who fail to meet their SDP commitment will face contractual consequences, including termination, if the commitment is not met.
  4. What is the impact on current contracts?
    • None. Only RFRs issued after October 1, 2013 are required to have the new RFR language, forms and requirements.   Older contracts will follow the same SDP requirements in their original agreements.  Some Departments may decide they want to follow this process at renewal time, but it not required
  5. How do we organize the reporting process?
    • Are commitments based on a percentage of revenue or sales? The commitment is a percentage (%) of annual sales.
    • Does Form #3 apply to all contracts, current and new?
      No.  You are welcome to use this form for current contracts, but it is only required   for use with RFRs issued after October 1, 2013.   SDP continues to be a contractual requirement for all large procurements, old and new, and reports must be filed at least biannually to ensure compliance with their commitment.
  6. Are signatures on the forms required?
    • Yes, form #2 and form #3 require signatures. The SSST should determine whether they will accept electronic signature, or wet ink signatures only.
  7. Can we accept electronic signature?
    • Yes, it is the SSST’s decision to require additional wet ink signatures.
  8. What do I need to do if a prime contractor needs to change their SDP partner?
    • Prime contractors may meet their commitment by doing business with any current SDO certified business. They must submit the Form #3 report as required by contract, and must identify those businesses and amounts spent during that reporting period. Contractors do not have to commit to certain SDP partners, or request permission to change them. This is one of the benefits of this new process.
  9. Do we still need to get copies of the certification letters and MOU letters from the prime contractors or their partners?
    • No, but Departments do need to verify certified partner status in the SDO database ( at www.mass.gov/sdo) or by contacting SDO at wsdo@state.ma.us  upon receipt of the contractor’s Form #3 report    Departments may choose to require SDO certification letters but should clearly state the requirement and any details related to it in the RFR/contract.