WASHINGTON — More than 125,000 entrepreneurs interested in starting or expanding a business have used the U.S. Small Business Administration’s newest online assessment resources, the SBA announced.
The SBA is helping hundreds of prospective entrepreneurs each day through two online assessment tools, the “Small Business Readiness” and the 8(a) Business Development assessment tools. In just over three months, more than 125,000 budding entrepreneurs have benefited from the latest Web-applications.
“These new tools represent a changing SBA, where more Web applications are being used to better serve our small business customers so they can have information when they need and wherever they are doing business,” said SBA Associate Administrator Anoop Prakash.
Since the SBA introduced the online “Small Business Readiness” assessment tool, usage has climbed rapidly. The assessment tool — the first of its kind — helps budding entrepreneurs evaluate their readiness for starting a small business.
The Small Business Readiness assessment tool helps prospective entrepreneurs determine their level of preparedness for venturing into a new business through a series of automated questions. It helps them evaluate their skills, characteristics, and experience as they relate to starting a business.
Based on their scores, entrepreneurs are directed to the SBA training resources that support the identified needs to improve business preparedness. The Small Business Readiness assessment tool is available on the SBA’s Web site at http://www.sba.gov/assessmenttool/index.html, or by clicking the “Assessment Tool” icon under the spotlight heading on the SBA home page.
The 8(a) Business Development assessment tool was launched in October to help small business owners decide whether they are suitable and eligible for the SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program. The program helps small disadvantaged businesses compete in the U.S. economy through business development. Like the small business readiness assessment, the customized 8(a) Business Development assessment tool directs entrepreneurs to targeted training and resources online. It too is available online at http://training.sba.gov:8000/assessment.
The Small Business Readiness and the 8(a) business development assessment tools help take away the guess work and are easy to use. They are customer-focused and designed to make it easier for entrepreneurs to evaluate and recognize needed business skills. The new Web-based tools are simple to use and take about 10 minutes to complete.