Report 2018-114 Recommendation 10 Responses
Report 2018-114: Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise Program: The Departments of General Services and Veterans Affairs Have Failed to Maximize Participation and to Accurately Measure Program Success (Release Date: February 2019)
Recommendation #10 To: General Services, Department of
To ensure that its outreach efforts are effective and result in a greater number of DVBE firms available that can provide the necessary goods and services awarding departments are seeking, General Services should assess, at least annually, the effectiveness of its past outreach efforts in increasing the number of DVBE firms that become certified.
1-Year Agency Response
Since February 2019, OSDS has been collecting data on DVBE-focused Outreach activities. Based on the data collected, Outreach has completed an annual assessment as of January 2020 on the effectiveness of past outreach efforts in increasing the number of DVBE firms that become certified that can provide the necessary goods and services awarding departments are seeking. This completed assessment revealed which activities were impacting the program most positively and which needed adjustments moving forward. This can be seen in Outreach's targeted Outreach plan, completed in January 2020, which commits to focus on the following going forward:
- Outreach will continue to attend events hosted by our DVBE strategic partners and provide direct support to DVBEs and potential DVBEs.
- Continue to strengthen relationships with DVBE-focused organizations and request DVBE organizations to focus outreach to DVBE firms that can provide goods and services state departments are seeking.
- Outreach is launching a media campaign to capture DVBE firm success stories in contracting.
- Address difficulties using Cal eProcure's search function and certification application.
- OSDS will continue to host quarterly meetings for SB/DVBE advocates, invite advocate feedback to improve outreach, host annual agency visits with departments who struggle to find DVBE firms who provide the goods and services they need, and continue to provide training.
- Outreach will continue to revamp brochures and online resources to provide the necessary information in the clearest and most concise manner.
- Monitor SCPRS data and dashboards to ensure that state departments are continuing to use a variety of DVBEs.
- Monitor DVBE certification data to see what types of goods and services newly certified DVBE firms provide to ensure they align with states needs and continue to evaluate if targeted outreach efforts are effective.
- Designing training webinars for State certified businesses.
- Completion Date: January 2020
- Response Date: February 2020
California State Auditor's Assessment of 1-Year Status: Fully Implemented
6-Month Agency Response
After Outreach conducts a certification workshop, all attendees are invited to fill out a post-event survey in order to assess the effectiveness of the workshop and how outreach can improve. These responses are evaluated and inform the content of future trainings.
As of January 2019, after all DVBEs complete their certification application online, they are given a survey asking how they found out about the certification program, and if applicable, what outreach event they attended. As of July 9, 2019, 1,750 responses have been collected, with nearly 23 percent of respondents identifying some outreach activity as their information source for obtaining certification.
Outreach developed a questionnaire that was distributed to six DVBE-focused strategic partners. This survey seeks information from DVBE-focused organizations on how Outreach can better address challenges to the disabled veteran business community in obtaining certification, bidding, and winning contracts and how DGS can improve the effectiveness of outreach efforts moving forward. As of July 8, 2019, responses have been received from three of these organizations. Outreach has followed up with organizations that have not responded and will continue to do so.
By January 1, 2020, the Outreach team will analyze all available gathered data regarding the effectiveness of DVBE outreach in 2019. Outreach will use the assessment to create an outreach plan for 2020 that will better address the needs of contracting state departments and the DVBE community.
- Estimated Completion Date: January 2020
- Response Date: August 2019
California State Auditor's Assessment of 6-Month Status: Pending
60-Day Agency Response
To assist DGS with its assessment of goals of DVBE firms in becoming certified or to identify reasons they may choose not to become certified, surveys were sent to strategic partners to help assess the program and receive input on how to better serve the DVBE community. DGS' Outreach Team is collecting and tracking businesses owned by disabled veterans that are attending the outreach events. In addition, certification data is being collected and will be reviewed to determine whether these businesses obtained their certifications. As of January 2019, after DVBEs complete their certification application online, they are given a survey asking how they found out about the certification program, and if applicable, what outreach event they attended. Further, the outreach team will be collaborating with the California Department of Veterans Affairs (CalVet) to develop a survey that will be sent to DVBEs who received their certification last year.
By January 1, 2020, the Outreach Team will analyze all available gathered data regarding DVBE participation at outreach and certification events. The data will be assessed for the effectiveness of the 2019 outreach efforts and for increasing the number of DVBE firms that become certified. OSDS will use the assessment to create an Outreach Plan for 2020 that will better address the needs of state departments and the DVBE community.
- Estimated Completion Date: January 2020
- Response Date: April 2019
California State Auditor's Assessment of 60-Day Status: Pending
Agency responses received are posted verbatim.