In a March 2011 national meeting of a working group on small business preparedness, participants identified the lack of a clear or centralized body of knowledge on small business preparedness. Due to this, the Center is engaged in polling a large number of organizations in an effort to create a credible database of such resources. This includes working on a taxonomy to organize the information into logical and searchable elements for easy use. In the future, the Center will develop a data mining and warehousing capability that will make this information accessible to its members.
Many universities have conducted numerous studies and research that can be used to help establish baseline metrics and business benchmarks, but they are not readily accessible. As the Center establishes its network of academic partners, this type of information will be accessible via the Center's portal. As the Center attracts sponsoring partners, it will make an effort to outsource this research to qualified partners of the Center. This sponsorship will encourage the sharing of information and potentially encourage organizations to suggest projects for sponsorship.
Reliable and well vetted metrics are needed to validate the business assumptions, assist with the justification, provide guidance to the program, and promote preparedness. The development of these types of metrics is the focus of several projects around the country.