How do I create and upload my SBA data exports to EDMIS?
EDMIS is the Entrepreneurial Development Management Information System, which is administered by SBA. EDMIS came online in October 2005 and it is based exclusively upon the federal fiscal year. Thus, a reporting period for EDMIS is October 1 through September 30, regardless of whether your SBDC or WBC has a contract with SBA on a calendar year basis.
Quarterly, SBA-funded centers are required to export data to the EDMIS system for reporting purposes. At the end of each quarter, you have 30 calendar days, plus five business days, to successfully submit your data.
Your quarterly EDMIS exports are always comprised of two XML files. The XML files follow the guidelines as provided by SBA in their SBA Data Requirements document as posted on the SBA web site at: https://www.sba.gov/offices/headquarters/oed/resources/33381. One file contains client data with counseling session, investment, and/or award data attached; the other file contains training data. Neoserra exports only the client identification data that EDMIS identifies as mandatory. Although Neoserra stores significantly more data than just what is exported (such as client name, phone number, email address, etc), this optional data is omitted from the export in order to keep your EDMIS export operations as simple (and private) as possible. Furthermore, in order for a session to be exported it must be marked as “reportable” in the session. Non-reportable sessions are never exported.
This FAQ is divided into two main topics:
- Database configurations that are important to EDMIS exports, and...
- The actual process of creating, troubleshooting, and uploading export files to EDMIS
Note: This FAQ is written for Neoserra administrators, operating in administrator-mode, because they are the only type of Neoserra users that are allowed to perform EDMIS exports in Neoserra.
There are several configurations that affect your EDMIS export process. Each setting should be taken into consideration and is discussed next.
United States SBA/DLA
Under the Administration|Configuration menu option, you will see the United States SBA/DLA panel. This panel contains several default settings that affect your EDMIS export as discussed in this FAQ.
For example, here you can define the default funding source(s) for all EDMIS exports. When you initially create an export, its funding source filter will default to whatever is set in the Funding source(s) of activity configuration, but it can always be overridden at the time of EDMIS export generation.
Similarly, the Center(s) to be included in export to EDMIS setting allows you to define the default center(s) for all EDMIS exports. When you initially create an export, its center filter will default to whatever is set here, although you can always override the default at the time of EDMIS export generation.
It is important to periodically review your default settings on the SBA/DLA panel to make sure the settings conform to your current operations.
The above mentioned settings are EDMIS specific and are all found under the on the SBA/DLA pane. There is an additional configuration on the "Settings" panel for you to be aware of. The "Settings" panel allows you to lock data in the Neoserra database that is older than a designated date. Why is this important? This is important because, although SBA allows edits to records previously submitted within the current fiscal year, once the fiscal year has closed, no records from the prior year may be edited.
To ensure that your Neoserra database is fully synchronized with the EDMIS database, OutreachSystems strongly recommends that you lock data each year right before uploading your fourth-quarter export files to EDMIS. This prevents users from adding or editing records that you are in the process of exporting. Neoserra administrators can override this lock so if you require the ability to change records based on Neoserra or EDMIS error log data, you're still able to do so.
To lock the Neoserra database after every fiscal year, set the date prior to which users should not be able to edit records in Administration|Configuration|General Settings. For detailed information on record locking, see the FAQ titled How do I "lock" previously reported data to ensure database and reporting integrity?
The PIMS code is sometimes also referred to as the Location Code. Every center in your database that contributes records to the EDMIS export must have a PIMS code present in its center record. EDMIS will reject any exported records that reference a center whose center record does not contain a PIMS code. To obtain a PIMS code, please contact SBA directly for this information. OutreachSystems does not have access to the PIMS codes.
Capital Funding Types
Additionally, you can add/delete capital funding types within Neoserra as discussed in the FAQ titled: How do I add, edit or inactivate capital funding types?. You should be aware that each newly added capital funding type should be carefully configured as to whether it is a loan, and sba loan, or not a loan at all:
Based upon the configuration for each newly added capital funding type, Neoserra will upload any records into the EDMIS system, accordingly. In other words, all loans marked as SBA loans are lumped together as SBA loans, and all non-SBA loans are lumped together simply as loans. EDMIS does not distinguish between one SBA loan type vs. another SBA loan type. EDMIS captures only the following capital funding information:
- Total Amount of SBA Loans
- Total Amount of Non-SBA Loans
- Amount of Equity Capital Received
Any non-loans will be included in the Amount of Equity Capital Received.
Note: All capital funding records that are approved, reportable and that have a approval amount that exceeds zero dollars, will be uploaded to EDMIS, assuming, of course, that they fall within the reporting period and have a funding source and center association that agrees with the EDMIS export settings.
The process of creating files for export to EDMIS is a long one. For this reason, we have divided this section into several broad steps, with each broad step containing its own set of steps:
- Step 1: Performing Duplicate Analysis on the Neoserra Database
- Step 2: Running a Test EDMIS Export
- Step 3: Reviewing & Remedying the Errors that Neoserra Identifies
- Step 4: Creating & Uploading an Error-Free Set of Export Files to EDMIS
- Step 5: Downloading EDMIS Error File & Remedying the Errors that EDMIS Identifies
- Step 6: Accepting All Records
- Step 7: Submitting the ASBDC Report
Duplicate client records negatively affect the integrity of your database. For SBA-funded centers reporting to EDMIS, duplicate client records are particularly troublesome because not only will you be overstating your client count and understating your extended engagement client count, but remedying duplicates is extremely complicated once session activity has been submitted to EDMIS for a duplicate client record.
For these reasons, we strongly recommend that you run a duplicate client report periodically to determine the extent of the duplicate records in your database. You can merge duplicate clients, assuming the "victim" client has not yet been accepted by EDMIS as discussed in the FAQ titled: How does the merge feature work?
Before data can be submitted to EDMIS, there are typically errors that require correction. By running a test EDMIS export, you have the opportunity to identify and correct errors before they are ever submitted to EDMIS. Keep in mind that the validation tests that OutreachSystems can perform against your data are not as extensive as the validation checks performed by SBA. Even if you resolve all the errors identified by Neoserra, you may still have errors in your database when uploading your data to EDMIS.
- From Neoserra, select Manage|EDMIS.
- Click the Exports link and then the New link.
- In the Title field, enter a descriptive title that clearly states what data this test export encompasses.
- By default, the Funding Source(s) field displays the default funding source(s) selected under Administration|Configuration|General Settings. This is most likely "SBA." You can add additional funding sources if so desired, however, it would be best to update the general settings with these additional funding sources so as to ensure that the same funding sources are included in the next export.
- By default, the Center(s) field displays the default center(s) selected on the Administration|Configuration|General Settings page. This is most likely "All." You can include/exclude centers as needed, but again, any changes made here probably also should be selected on the General Settings page.
- Select the quarter and year for which you are creating the test export.
- For the Type of Export field, select the "Test" option. When you create a test run of the EDMIS export, Neoserra goes through both the 641 and 888 data at once so that you can get a big-picture view of how export-ready your data is.
- When all export criteria is set, click the Save button.
If you intend to export records from multiple funding sources, its important to note that EDMIS will reject multiple initial counseling sessions or out-of-sequence initial/follow-up counseling sessions for a single client. Therefore, be prepared to encounter problems if you export records from multiple funding sources and you have multiple initial counseling sessions for a single client under different funding sources. For example, a dual-funded center that has one DLA-funded and one SBA-funded initial counseling session for a single client will encounter EDMIS rejections if the center selects both "SBA" and "DLA" for the exports funding source.
Regardless of the quarter you select, Neoserra will always use the first day of the current fiscal year as the start date. This is to ensure that (1) any new records entered for prior quarters or (2) any records previously submitted that have since been updated are uploaded to EDMIS. EDMIS permits updates to previously-submitted records as long as those records were submitted within the current fiscal year.
Depending on the size of your database, the export file types selected, and the quality of your Internet connection, the test process can take up to 90 minutes, so please be patient.
Upon completion of the test export process, Neoserra displays your newly-created EDMIS export record. This EDMIS export record includes a listing and summary of all records gathered into the test run, along with any errors Neoserra found during the test run. In addition, several documents are attached to the test EDMIS export record (these documents do not contribute to your total storage allocation):
- An EDMIS ExportLog that highlights the data corrections that Neoserra makes during the export process (this file is stored as an attachment in the resulting EDMIS export record)
- Two .csv (comma-separated values) files that were created for your own internal use. These are NOT to be uploaded to EDMIS. In fact, the test export process does not generate any files for the EDMIS system—it is simply a test run to check data quality.
- A third .csv file that contains the quarterly report required by the ASBDC. However, as discussed in step 7, we don't recommend that you submit this report to ASBDC; you should wait until you have run the 641 data for the last time and submit the ASBDC report that is attached to that particular EDMIS export record.
If your test run indicates errors, either through the posted EDMIS Export Log or the various record summary tabs, you'll need to remedy the errors before uploading data to EDMIS, as discussed in the next section.
If Neoserra comes across errors in the test run, it will alert you to them in several places:
- EDMIS Export Log (generated by Neoserra and attached to the EDMIS export record)
- The test EDMIS export record itself (under the various record type tabs as well as the main "Summary" tab)
- In the various Error forms, available from the Manage|EDMIS menu:
If errors are identified in your data, you'll want to focus on remedying the errors before creating the actual EDMIS export files. Theres no point in uploading records to EDMIS that will be rejected. It's better to remedy the errors in Neoserra before creating the actual export files.
If no errors are identified in your test run, give yourself a hearty congratulations on a job well done and skip to the Step 4 section.
You may be wondering how errors are possible when Neoserra automatically validates every new record added to the database to make sure it meets the latest EDMIS requirements. Unfortunately, as vigilant as Neoserra is, errors can still sneak in. For example, per EDMIS definitions, you cannot create a prep-only counseling session for a client if there are no prior sessions in the database for that client that includes contact time. Neoserra respects this, but what if the session with the contact time is deleted from the system after the prep-only session is created? Neoserra cannot validate this action and an EDMIS error is silently introduced.
How you decide to fix the identified errors may depend upon the number of errors and the procedures in place for your program. If there are only a couple, it may be easier for the lead center to go into the database and correct the errors. But if there are a significant number of errors of if your program expects individual centers to be responsible for their own errors, you can direct Neoserra users to the error records found under the EDMIS menu option in Neoserra and request that they identify and correct the errors displayed there for their center.
The steps for identifying and correcting errors in Neoserra using the error records are outlined next:
- Click Manage|EDMIS and open one of the available forms (these forms correlate with the five record types that contributed to your test EDMIS export: client, counseling session, capital funding, award, and training event records).
- Verify that the filter settings are accurate.
- To correct an error within a record, click on the date of the record. Neoserra will display that record with the error(s) displayed at the top in red:
- After correcting the error(s), save your edits, and move on to the next error. As errors are corrected, they will disappear from the summary display, assuming that your filter box criteria is set to display only those record types with a Status of "Error".
- Repeat steps 3a-3f for each form under the EDMIS menu.
Once all the errors identified by Neoserra have been corrected, you should create the actual export files. This is done by following the same steps you did when you created the test run (as outlined in the Step 2 section) with the exception that you'll need to perform the steps twice—once to generate the 888 file and once to generate the 641 file.
As with the test run, Neoserra will create another EDMIS Export Log. Hopefully, all issues were already resolved in the previous step and the EDMIS Export Log provided by Neoserra will show no errors, but, if errors are still present, no problem. Simply correct the remaining errors (as outlined in the Step 3 section) and perform the export process again—or as many more times as necessary.
At last you will have error-free export files. These are the ones you should upload to EDMIS. Up to this point, EDMIS has no knowledge of anything you have done in Neoserra. You must upload your export files to EDMIS to bring the EDMIS system into the loop.
To upload your XML files to EDMIS, perform the following steps:
- From the final error-free EDMIS export records you created, right-click on the generated XML files (one 888 file and one 641 file) and save them to your file system.
- Then, visit https://eweb.sba.gov/gls. Log in using your user ID and password, as provided by EDMIS.
- From the left-hand menu, select the type of file you'll be uploading from under the Upload menu selection, as shown next.
- When presented with the File to upload field, you can browse the directory system on your computer for the XML files you just saved. Make sure you upload the correct file!
After uploading both export files, it's good practice to delete the prior test EDMIS export records that were created during the troubleshooting process, if you haven't already. Since none of the data resulting from these prior exports will be uploaded to EDMIS, there's no reason to keep these records around and it's best to delete them to avoid confusion in the future. Of course, you should always keep the final EDMIS export records that the uploaded files were pulled from.
Note: It's not until you upload data to EDMIS and begin updating your EDMIS export records with the acceptance or rejection statuses provided by EDMIS, as discussed in the next section, that any EDMIS-related export activity is bonded to the Neoserra database.
After uploading your export files to EDMIS, youll need to wait up to one business day for EDMIS to process them. After processing is complete, you should receive an email from EDMIS for each uploaded file that informs you of the status of that file. However, OutreachSystems recommends that you never rely solely on the email responses as they are unreliable. If you do not have a reply email waiting for you within the next day or two, you should go directly to the EDMIS Web site to find out the upload status.
If the upload status summary notes any failed records (whether you're viewing it via email or the EDMIS Web site), it's imperative that you import the EDMIS Error Report into Neoserra so that the Neoserra system can track which records have been accepted by EDMIS and which records have been rejected. When Neoserra knows that a record has been accepted by EDMIS, it's able to properly handle subsequent edits or deletions of that record according to EDMIS requirements.
Another benefit to importing the EDMIS Error Report into Neoserra is that you'll be able to use the Error forms once again, this time to correct the errors identified by EDMIS. Since the EDMIS Error Report is not reader-friendly, the ability to read about the errors in plain English is extremely helpful.
The process of importing the EDMIS Error Report into Neoserra is outlined next:
- If you received the EDMIS Error Report via email as an attachment, save it to your file system (in a place where you can easily find it later) and skip to step 5d. If you are accessing the EDMIS Web site for status information, log in and select the type of file youre checking on from under the Upload Status left-hand menu selection, as shown next.
- Enter a date range that represents the date when you uploaded the export file and EDMIS provides you with a status table that contains information about your upload.
- If any records failed, youll see an error file icon in the far right column, as shown in the previous graphic. Right-click this icon and, from the context menu that appears, select the "Save Target As" menu option. Save the file to your file system in a place where you can easily find it later.
- From Neoserra, open the EDMIS export record that generated the export file for which you received the EDMIS Error Report.
- Click the Errors|Import Error Log button, as shown next.
- Browse for the EDMIS Error Report that you saved locally. When you locate it, click the Upload button.
- Neoserra returns you to the EDMIS export record. Notice that the EDMIS Error Report is now attached to the EDMIS export record under the "Attached Documents" heading.
If there is no error file present for either of your uploaded export files, skip to the Step 3 section.
Open the lower record tabs. Notice that, for the records that were rejected by EDMIS, the reason for rejection is displayed and, for the records that were accepted, a "Y" is placed in the "Accepted?" column.
Accepted records are never submitted to EDMIS again, unless they are edited or deleted. Rejected records, of course, must be remedied. These records can be remedied using the same steps outlined in the Step 3 section.
You may be thinking that you already went through a troubleshooting process and how can you still have rejected records? Keep in mind that the only errors you have corrected thus far have been those that Neoserra was able to detect. Unfortunately, Neoserra is not able to detect all errors. For example, Neoserra will warn you if a record doesnt contain a ZIP Code, but it cannot validate the ZIP Codes that are present. EDMIS, however, does validate ZIP Codes and if you upload a record with an invalid ZIP Code, the record will be rejected by EDMIS whereas Neoserra let it slip by.
Once you or your users correct the errors identified by the EDMIS system, you should create brand new export files (using identical generation parameters) and submit them to EDMIS. When gathering records for subsequent exports, Neoserra will only include those records that were previously rejected. Accepted records from the last go-around will not be re-exported (unless you edited them).
Essentially, you'll keep cycling through this process until the EDMIS system indicates that all your records were successfully uploaded. Don’t be discouraged if you need to do a couple of uploads in order to get to the point where all records are accepted by EDMIS. With each upload, youll be submitting a smaller and smaller set of records.
Once the EDMIS system indicates that all your records were successfully uploaded, its almost time for celebration—but not quite yet. There is still one VERY important step you must take, which is to manually set the status of the last batch of submitted records to "Accepted."
Why manually? Because if your final upload status is that all records were successfully uploaded, there's no EDMIS Error Report to import into Neoserra to automatically do it for you. This is probably the easiest step of the entire process, but it is also the most overlooked step, with unpleasant consequences. If records that have been accepted by EDMIS aren't marked as accepted in Neoserra, Neoserra will continue to try and upload these records over and over again.
The steps for manually setting the status of the very last batches of uploaded records to accepted are outlined next:
- From Neoserra, open the EDMIS export record that generated the export file for which all records were accepted by EDMIS.
- Click the Errors|Accept All menu option.
Congratulations! You have completed your EDMIS export process!
Note: Did you just complete a fourth-quarter export? If so, don't forget to lock data for the previous fiscal year, as described in Locking Data.
In the fall of 2011, it was decided that SBDCs, in addition to uploading to EDMIS, should also submit a similar quarterly report to the ASBDC. Organized by federal congressional district, this new report will then be used by the ASBDC in its efforts to promote America's SBDC Network. The congressional districts should be annotated with the two-digit State abbereviation (e.g. California = CA) and the two-digit State District number (e.g. CA-24.)
By the fall of 2015, it was determined that most SBDCs forgot to send this report to the ASBDC. The ASBDC asked OutreachSystems to send this report to the ASBDC with each SBDC programs's approval. If you have provided OutreachSystems with your approval then this report is automatically sent to ASBDC forty (40) days after the close of each federal fiscal quarter. To cancel the automated process (once consent is given) please contact OutreachSystems, in writing, 10 business days prior to the next scheduled run.
If you are curious as to what is included in the file, you can take a look at a copy of the file in Neoserra by clicking Manage|EDMIS|EDMIS Exports. Pick any one of your recent 641 exports, click on it, and in the right hand margin you should see a file labeled: YYYYMMDD-HHMM_ASBDCs.csv.
The specifications for this report came directly from ASBDC and, per ASBDC, are not intended to produce the same numbers as your EDMIS exports. For example, it is known and, in fact, expected that the Total Jobs Created/Retained in the ASBDC report will not match the EDMIS numbers. Similarly, it is known and expected that the Total Business Starts in the ASBDC report will not match the number reported in EDMIS. Furthermore, there are some data elements included in the ASBDC report that are not tracked in EDMIS. For example, the ASBDC report includes the Total Number of Minority Clients, which is not something EDMIS tracks.
As noted above, you can either send the report to ASBDC yourself, or you can have OutreachSystems send it automatically. If you decide to send it yourself then you can email the report to Tee Rowe at ASBDC (firstname.lastname@example.org). You should open the final EDMIS 641 export record generated (ideally the one for which you received no errors from the EDMIS system). From this record's attached documents, download and save the ASBDC report to your system. By submitting the very final ASBDC report generated, you are ensuring that the data submitted to ASBDC is in the same final form as the data submitted to EDMIS. Every time Neoserra generates the ASBDC report, it includes all activity in the date range, not just the corrected records that you may be resubmitting to EDMIS. So you don't need to worry that, by grabbing the ASBDC report from the final export record, you are only reporting on a limited amount of data. All relevant data is always included in the ASBDC report.
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