Queensland small businesses can now receive up to $10,000 in matched funding for new digital technology and services. The funding is part of the state government's Small Business Digital Grants Program and is open to Queensland based businesses operating with fewer than 20 employees.
The program will award grants for projects that promote digital growth and competitiveness. Businesses can apply if they're looking at investing in one of the following areas:
- digital planning and advice/training.
- specialised technology or software (business specific)
- digital marketing and social media
- digital content (web pages, mobile apps, media etc.)
- receiving payments or selling online
Businesses can mark up to 20 per cent of their co-contribution as an in-kind element for their personal time being trained in new technologies.
The range of areas enables businesses to merely dip their toes in digital disruption or take on a broader, bolder strategy.
[x_blockquote cite="James Sowry, Sentrian MD" type="left"]A collection of a few simple tools can be transformative for your business. They can improve processes, increase efficiency and ultimately spark growth.[/x_blockquote]
Document management software, internal communications tools, hosted telephony and desktop are all areas for potential improvements. Each solutions can directly translate into an actual outcomes. Taking steps toward diminished email reliance, a mobile workforce and data-rich document indexing, can all form part of a digital strategy.
Businesses looking to join the program must have:
- fewer than 20 employees at the time of applying for the grant
- an Australian Business Number (ABN) and be registered for GST
- Queensland headquarters or significant Queensland-based operations
It is also a requirement to declare if any owners or directors of the business are an undischarged bankrupt or insolvent.
Applications will be assessed against the following eligibility criteria:
- the extent to which the digital technology or service will enhance the digital capabilities of the business to make the business more competitive
- the potential and likelihood the activity will deliver jobs growth
- value for money
There are two key points as to how the funding may be used:
- The grant cannot be used toward the ongoing maintenance cost of existing technology, e.g. web hosting, service & hardware renewals
- All purchases must be made within three months of receiving the grant
Payments will be granted after the project is completed and will be increased to compensate for potential GST costs. A year after the project is finished, Businesses can expect to be surveyed on the program's success.
Find out more about the program specifics in the Program Guidelines available here.
Where to start
If your business won't be able to make the December 9 cut-off for applications, new grants will be available very soon. The program will open up new rounds in March and June 2017.
We're always looking out to support our current and new clients by helping them shape their digital strategy and offer the benefits of an Improvement Management Office.
If you'd like more information, help preparing your application or to discuss your digital strategy options, contact your Sentrian Client Services Manager today.