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SBA recently began to address long-standing financial management problems, but is out in front with its on-line site – -- to help small businesses comply with federal regulations.

Initiative Status Progress

Human Capital — The agency will retrain its staff and pursue policies to more effectively reach out to America’s 25 million small businesses. SBA’s goals are to provide field offices with greater flexibility to manage programs based upon the needs of the local community and to centralize loan processing to improve customer service. SBA has assessed the skills of its staff, committed funds to training them in marketing and outreach, and developed new performance standards to hold staff accountable for their service to SBA customers.

Competitive Sourcing — SBA has conducted an inventory and identified staff positions that should be subjected to a public-private should competition in 2003.

Financial Performance — SBA deteriorated in this initiative because it has encountered significant challenges in accounting for loan asset sales, meeting accounting performance standards, and measuring risk in its loan portfolio more accurately.

Enhancing E-Government — SBA, in partnership with federal agencies and state governments has developed the Business Compliance One-Stop, part of the on-line system to help entrepreneurs easily find, understand, and comply with the myriad of regulations that affect their businesses.

Budget/Performance Integration — SBA is strong in some areas of budget performance and integration, however, it needs to develop outcome measures for technical assistance programs and make funding decisions according to expectations of program performance.

arrows indicate change in status since baseline evaluation on September 30, 2001.

Program Assessments

The Program Assessment Rating Tool was applied to four of the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) programs. The assessment of these programs revealed some duplication in the provision of technical assistance and business loans. Across the board, the agency lacks measures that demonstrate program effectiveness in achieving outcomes. Generally, the assessed programs achieved an “above average” rating in the area of management and “average” ratings for planning and results.
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