Tools and Tips

The Small Business Administration and the Navy signed an agreement this morning designed to improve federal contracting opportunities for more than 240 small disadvantaged firms participating in the SBA's 8(a) Business Development program. The Naval Sea Systems Command will use its SeaPort-e Web portal to award federal contracts directly to firms participating in the 8(a) program without SBA acting as an intermediary.

The Small Business Administration is offering two new online finance courses: Finance Primer: A Guide to SBA's Loan Guaranty Programs and How to Prepare a Loan Package help business owners understand debt financing, available loan programs, borrowing money, loan package preparation and loan requests.

The SBA is also offering state and local governments a template for resolving regulatory enforcement issues involving small businesses by helping them to establish their own versions of the department's Office of the National Ombudsman. The model provides an overview on how the SBA's Office of the National Ombudsman serves as troubleshooter for the nation's small businesses. Read more about the model here (pdf).

SCORE, which offers counseling to entrepreneurs by seasoned business executives, has partnered with Concentric to offer a free workshop to help small business owners define and implement a Web site strategy. The online course at score.org offers entrepreneurs advice on planning a Web site, choosing a service provider and tips on site content and promotion. Separately, SCORE has launched a business blog targeting women business owners.

Women Impacting Public Policy has joined with small business online network SBTV.com to offer a weekly legislative policy podcast. Presented by WIPP's Government Affairs team and recorded by Ann Sullivan, the WIPP Legislative podcast will be posted here every Monday afternoon during the weeks Congress is in session.

By Sharon McLoone |  July 14, 2008; 12:50 PM ET Tools and Tips
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