Our six regional service locations and more than 20 outreach centers provide new or existing businesses with confidential consulting services and training opportunities in a variety of business topics throughout our service territory. Our consulting services are offered at no cost to the client along with many of our training sessions, however some SBDC locations offer some training topics at a nominal fee.
Here’s how the SBDC works
SBDC consulting services are free
SBDC consulting services are offered at no cost to clients through partial funding from the U.S. Small Business Administration (your tax dollars at work!), the California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz), our six host institutions including our network host, California State University, Fullerton local organization grant funds and more.
Our consulting services are not only offered to you at no-cost, but are also confidential and tailored to your specific needs. All of our SBDC staff members and consultants adhere to strict confidentiality and security policies and procedures in accordance with SBDC accreditation standards.
Our consultants are paid and experienced
Our consultants are paid through our program’s funding and experienced in a variety of business functional areas, industries and specialties. For more information about our staff and consultants, view our staff page.
Training opportunities are offered at a nominal fee or at no cost
Our seminars and training opportunities are often offered at no-cost or a nominal fee. Each SBDC service location maintains their location’s training events and respective pricing. thus pricing and topics may vary from one location to another.
We provide our clients access to our extensive network
We also provide our clients with access to our extensive network of partners, which include service providers, public agencies, and non-profits, which ultimately provide our clients with additional resources for their business.
Another key benefit for our “success story” clients is publicity. Our OCIE SBDC Network team coordinates grand openings and ribbon cutting events for our brick and mortar clients, which highlights their launch via local press, social media and email outreach – at no cost to the client. Many of our success stories are also promoted via our SBDC marketing channels, in SBA materials and our network partner promotional efforts as well.
It’s easy to become a client, here’s how to sign up
To become an SBDC client, click the “get started” button and complete the requested information. Depending on your needs and your location, one of our SBDC offices will contact you to make an appointment and review the next steps. You can also contact one of our service locations directly to schedule an appointment.
So you’ve signed up for services,
here’s what next
Your first appointment
Over the course of your first appointment, one of our SBDC consultants will assess your business needs and create a scope of work that outlines action items for reaching your objectives and a practical timeline.
Items to consider bringing with you to your appointment, as appropriate:
- business plan
- marketing materials
- your product
Your consultant will discuss SBDC and his/her consulting process and philosophy and will give you a verbal overview of your company and/or plan. You and your consultant will then discuss any issues, needs as well as potential resources, tools and processes you could utilize. Then, your consultant will develop a follow-up plan and discuss next steps leading up to your next appointment.
Your next appointment
During your second appointment, your consultant will begin to tackle the scope of work outlined during your first meeting with you. Then, she will work with you to set milestones, discuss applicable strategies or options available to you and create action items to keep things moving toward your goals. As each scope of work is designed specifically for each client, this step is different for every client. For example, during your second appointment, our consultants may be want to begin preparing you for funding, that is, helping you with your bank plan and financial projections so our team can help you obtain the financing you need. At the end of your session, your consultant will discuss progress, follow up items and next steps.
Registering for training
Have you checked out the calendar of events and workshops? Once you find an event you’d like to attend, click “Register.” You will be prompted to create a new account or login if you are an existing user to complete registration. If you are a new user, you will be asked to provide your name and email, then choose a password. Once your account is created, follow the prompts on screen to complete your registration. As a registered user, you can register and attend countless workshops! If you have difficulty registering for an event or would like to request assistance, please contact us at 1-800-616-SBDC. We would be delighted to help!
Keeping in touch and engaged
We often host special events for our clients, so check our website often!
Subscribe to our email newsletter.
Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn for event updates and additional resources.
Read our blog page!