Survey to Assess Needs of Rural Nebraska Small Businesses and Entrepreneurs

Release Date: 



Dena R. Beck, Center for Rural Affairs REAP Business Specialist,, Phone: (308) 528-0060
or Elisha Smith, Center for Rural Affairs,, Phone: (402) 687-2103 ext. 1007

Lyons, Nebraska - The Center for Rural Affairs’ Rural Enterprise Assistance Project (REAP), is once again circulating a statewide small business needs assessment survey, to explore how Nebraska small businesses are faring.  This survey is the 5th biennial survey conducted by the organization.

The short survey, which only takes about 6 minutes to complete, is for business owners and those that serve them (including lenders and resource providers).
“The biennial Small Business Needs Assessment survey started in 2008 as more of an internal review to evaluate our current products and services in relation to what Nebraska businesses need. It has blossomed into a very valuable study, not only for our 25-year old REAP program, but for other service providers across the state and beyond,” states Dena Beck, Survey Creator and Co-Author.  “As we approach our 5th study, we are hopeful for the best response yet.”
Beck encourages business owners and service providers to take a few minutes to take the survey and share their feedback. The survey can be found at:
“The small business climate in Nebraska is constantly changing.  Meeting the needs of startup and existing small businesses is extremely important to all the organizations and entities that provide small business services," commented Jeff Reynolds, REAP Program Director. "As with previous surveys, the Center for Rural Affairs REAP program will be using the results of this 'needs' based survey to help shape future programming with the ultimate goal of enhancing programming to best serve the critical needs of today’s entrepreneurs.”
According to Reynolds, previous surveys resulted in REAP creating bookkeeping training. “After the very first survey in 2008, survey respondents indicated a huge need for bookkeeping training. That’s a need we immediately filled and are still filling eight years later. At this point we currently contract with at least six people who offer that kind of training to fill that need. It’s now a big part of our curriculum.”
Reynolds stated, “This is a valued survey, not only within our organization and in Nebraska, but it’s read throughout the United States.”
REAP is Nebraska’s largest microenterprise program and is committed to meeting the needs of startup and existing entrepreneurs in rural Nebraska. REAP provides lending, loan packaging, training, networking, and technical assistance opportunities for startup and existing small businesses.
For more information about REAP and its services and to access the survey, . The survey can also be found at: If you have any questions about the survey, would like to read the results of previous surveys, or would like the 2016 results brought to your organization, please contact survey author, Dena R. Beck, REAP Sr. Project Leader and Loan Specialist or 308-528-0060.  
The report on the last survey conducted in 2014 can be found here:

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