Survey of OSDBU Directors

U.S. Government Accountability Office

Introduction

  The United States Government Accountability Office (GAO) is conducting a study on small business contracting for the Senate Committee on Small Business and Entrepreneurship. As part of this effort, we are surveying directors of the Offices of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU) at 25 federal agencies. (We are using the term "OSDBU" to include an office that is known as the Office of Small Business Programs.) We are interested in how the OSDBU directors are carrying out the duties and functions of their offices.

This survey should take less than 60 minutes to complete and does not need to be completed in one sitting. Your responses can be saved and accessed at a later date. To learn more about completing the questionnaire and printing your responses, please click here. To find out whom to contact if you have questions, please click here. Your response by November 15, 2010, is greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance for your assistance and cooperation in taking part in our survey.
 
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Background of Your OSDBU

  For the purposes of this survey, "small business" also includes small disadvantaged businesses, women-owned small businesses, HUBZone small businesses, service-disabled veteran-owned small businesses, and veteran-owned small businesses.
 
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1.  How long have you been Director of the Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization (OSDBU)? Please enter your approximate years of service.
 
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  Years:
 
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2.  Please briefly describe the overall mission of your office. Type your answer in the box, which will expand if needed.
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OSDBU Roles in Agency Procurement

  The following sections ask you about the functions and duties that your office might perform under Section 15(k) of the Small Business Act. For each of the following activities, please tell us whether each is currently a role or function that your office can perform, even if it has not yet done so. For those activities that fall to your office as official roles or functions, please tell us the extent to which your office actually engages in those activities and describe that involvement.

If an office other than the OSDBU carries out any of the following functions at your agency, please describe that office and its role at your agency in the appropriate questions.
 
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Acquisition Planning

3.  Is involvement in acquisition planning, as defined in Part 7 of the Federal Acquisition Regulation, currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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2. (Skip to question 5)
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4.  In general, to what extent is your office involved in acquisition planning?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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5.  If your office is not currently involved in acquisition planning, what entity is involved in acquisition planning that advocates for small business consideration?
(Please check all that apply)
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  If you checked "None" or "Other," please describe:
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6.  Is determining small business set-asides for individual acquisitions currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 8.
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7.  How often is your office involved in determining small business set-asides for individual acquisitions?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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8.  Is determining small business set-asides for a class of acquisitions currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 10.
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9.  How often is your office involved in determining small business set-asides for a class of acquisitions?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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10.  In the event of a formal disagreement between your office and procurement officials during the acquisition planning process concerning small business matters, what is the first level of appeal for your office if the situation is not resolved?
(Select one)
1. (Skip to question 14)
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  If you checked "Other," please describe below:
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11.  Does your agency require written justification from procurement officials if they disagree with your office's objections?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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  If you checked "Written justification required," please describe below:
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12.  Has your office formally disagreed with the procurement officials during acquisition planning concerning small business matters in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 14)
3.
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13.  How often has your office formally disagreed with procurement officials during acquisition planning concerning small business matters in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
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  Typically, what were the outcomes of these disagreements?
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Solicitation Development

14.  Is developing proposed solicitations currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 16.
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15.  In general, to what extent is your office involved in developing proposed solicitations?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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16.  Is attempting to identify proposed solicitations that involve bundling of contract requirements currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 18.
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17.  In general, to what extent does your office attempt to identify proposed solicitations that involve bundling of contract requirements?
(Select one)
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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18.  Is working with agency acquisition officials to revise procurement strategies for bundled contract requirements to increase small business participation currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 20.
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19.  In general, to what extent does your office work with agency acquisition officials to revise procurement strategies for bundled contract requirements to increase small business participation?
(Select one)
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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20.  Is facilitating small business participation as subcontractors to bundled contracts currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 22.
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21.  In general, to what extent does your office facilitate small business participation as subcontractors to bundled contracts?
(Select one)
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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22.  Is developing evaluation factors for solicitations for your agency currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 24.
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23.  How often does your office develop evaluation factors for solicitations for your agency?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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24.  In the event of a formal disagreement between your office and procurement officials during solicitation development concerning small business matters, what is the first level of appeal for your office if the situation is not resolved?
(Select one)
1. (Skip to question 28)
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
(View responses)
 
  If "Other," please describe:
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25.  Does your agency require written justification from procurement officials if they disagree with your office's objections?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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  If you checked "Written justification required," please describe:
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26.  Has your office formally disagreed with the procurement officials during solicitation development concerning small business matters in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 28)
3.
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27.  How often has your office formally disagreed with procurement officials during solicitation development concerning small business matters in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
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  Typically, what were the outcomes of these disagreements?
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Proposal Evaluation

28.  Is evaluating proposals submitted by potential contractors in response to solicitations currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 30.
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29.  How often does your office evaluate proposals submitted by potential contractors in response to solicitations?
(Select one)
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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30.  Is reviewing subcontracting plans for small business consideration from potential prime contractors currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 32.
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31.  How often does your office review subcontracting plans for small business consideration from potential prime contractors?
(Select one)
1.
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3.
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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32.  Is making recommendations to procurement officials on whether a particular contract should be awarded to a small business currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 34)
3.
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33.  How often does your office make recommendations to procurement officials on whether a particular contract should be awarded to a small business?
(Select one)
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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34.  If your office does not make contract recommendations, what entity makes recommendations on contracts for small business consideration?
(Please check all that apply)
1.
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6.
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  If you checked "None" or "Other," please describe:
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35.  In the event of a formal disagreement between your office and procurement officials during proposal evaluation concerning small business matters, what is the first level of appeal for your office if the situation is not resolved?
(Select one)
1. (Skip to question 39)
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
(View responses)
 
  If "Other," please describe:
(View responses)
 
36.  Does your agency require written justification from procurement officials if they disagree with your office's objections?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
(View responses)
 
  If "Written justification required," please describe:
(View responses)
 
37.  Has your office disagreed with the procurement officials during solicitation review concerning small business matters in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 39)
3.
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38.  If your office and the procurement officials have disagreed in the past 24 months, approximately what percentage of contract awards was in dispute?
(Select one)
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  Typically, what were the outcomes of these disagreements?
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Monitoring

39.  Is monitoring small businesses that receive prime contracts from your agency currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 41.
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40.  In general, to what extent does your office monitor small businesses that receive prime contracts from your agency?
(Select one)
1.
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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41.  Is monitoring prime contractors' implementation of subcontracting plans currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 43.
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42.  In general, to what extent does your office monitor the prime contractors' implementation of subcontracting plans?
(Select one)
1.
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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Other Areas

43.  In what ways are agency program officials and procurement officials made aware of small businesses as potential contractors?
(Please check all that apply)
1.
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  If you checked "Not done" or "Other ways," please describe:
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Facilitation of Small Business Participation

44.  Is facilitating small business participation with your agency as contractors, subcontractors, or suppliers currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 46.
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45.  In general, to what extent does your office facilitate small business participation with your agency as contractors, subcontractors, or suppliers?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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46.  Is assisting small businesses to obtain payments from your agency currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 48.
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47.  In general, to what extent does your office assist small businesses to obtain payments from your agency?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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48.  Is assisting small businesses to obtain payments from prime contractors currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 50.
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49.  In general, to what extent does your office assist small businesses to obtain payments from prime contractors?
(Select one)
1.
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3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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50.  Is disseminating information to small businesses on how to secure business opportunities with your agency currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 52.
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51.  In general, to what extent does your office disseminate information to small businesses on how to secure business opportunities with your agency?
(Select one)
1.
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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52.  Is hosting conferences to familiarize small businesses with opportunities at your agency currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 55.
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53.  Has your office hosted any conferences to familiarize small businesses with opportunities at your agency in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 55)
3.
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54.  How many conferences has your office hosted to familiarize small businesses with opportunities at your agency in the past 24 months? Please enter a number.
 
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  Conferences in the past 24 months:
 
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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55.  Is sponsoring training programs for small businesses currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
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4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 57.
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56.  Has your office sponsored any training programs for small businesses in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
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3.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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57.  Is conducting meetings with small business trade associations and/or prime contractors currently a role or function of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
4.
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  If you answered "No - not an OSDBU role or function," please describe which office, if any, carries out this role or function. Then please skip to question 60.
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58.  Has your office conducted any meetings with small business trade associations and/or prime contractors in the past 24 months?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 60)
3.
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59.  On average, how many meetings does your office conduct with small business trade associations and/or prime contractors in a typical week? Please enter a number.
 
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  Meetings per week:
 
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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Agency Personnel

60.  How many full-time equivalent (FTE) staff in fiscal year 2010, excluding administrative support staff, did your OSDBU employ? Please enter a number, using numeric digits only.
 
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  FTEs in FY 2010
 
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61.  Do you, the Director of the OSDBU, have supervisory authority over personnel with duties and functions of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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62.  Do you, the Director of the OSDBU, serve as the primary contact for your agency for inquiries into small business matters and those affecting your agency's socioeconomic program goals?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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  If "No," list the primary contact:
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63.  Does your office have written policies and procedures relating to the functions and duties of your office?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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  If "Yes," please describe:
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64.  Who is responsible for ensuring that small businesses receive the maximum practicable procurement opportunities from the agency?
(Select one)
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2.
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6.
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  If "Other," please explain:
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Interaction with the Small Business Administration (SBA)

65.  Has SBA designated one or more procurement center representatives to your agency?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 68)
3.
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66.  Have you, the Director of the OSDBU, assigned a small business technical advisor to each office with a SBA procurement center representative?
(Select one)
1.
2.
3.
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67.  To what extent does your office work with SBA procurement center representatives?
(Select one)
1.
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3.
4.
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6.
7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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68.  To what extent does your office cooperate and consult with SBA?
(Select one)
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7.
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  Please briefly explain your answer.
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69.  Does your office negotiate the small business goals (also referred to as socioeconomic goals) for your agency with SBA?
(Select one)
1.
2. (Skip to question 71)
3.
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70.  In your agency's annual small business goal-setting process, does your office discuss potential goals with any of the following parties?
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Yes
No
No answer
  A. Agency head or deputy
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  B. Procurement officials
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  C. Agency program officials
(View responses)
  D. Other (Please describe in the box below)
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  If "Other," please describe:
(View responses)
 

Other Functions

71.  Does your office have other functions that do not relate to section 15(k) of the Small Business Act? If so, please briefly describe up to 5 functions in the boxes below. If not, please write "None" in the first box below.

1st function:
(View responses)
 
  2nd function:
(View responses)
 
  3rd function:
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  4th function:
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  5th function:
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Challenges

72.  To what extent is your office facing each of the following challenges in performing its mission?
(View responses)
   
Very great extent
Great extent
Moderate extent
Some extent
Little or no extent
Don't know
No answer
  A. Lack of independent budget
(View responses)
  B. Limited budgetary resources
(View responses)
  C. Lack of adequate staffing level
(View responses)
  D. Lack of influence in the procurement process
(View responses)
  E. Director has insufficient access to agency head or deputy
(View responses)
  F. Lack of independence to oppose procurement official decisions
(View responses)
  G. Director employment status (e.g., political appointee or civil servant)
(View responses)
  H. Other (Please describe in the box below)
(View responses)
 
  If "Other," please describe:
(View responses)
 
73.  If you have any other comments on the topics covered in this survey, please enter them below.
(View responses)
 

When Your Questionnaire Is Complete

74.  When you have completed the questionnaire and want GAO to use your responses, please click the "Completed" button below.
(Select one)
1.
2.
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Print and Exit

  Before you click the Exit button below to log out, you may view and print a summary of all the responses you made by clicking on the link below.

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