Your Canadian small business may be eligible for government grants and loans to offset costs associated with COVID-19, hiring and training, new technology, innovation, and more.
Understanding Government Funding
Canadian government funding programs: what are they and where does one even begin the discovery process? Maybe your business has applied to grant or loans before, and maybe you know that there are hundreds of programs available for business support, but it’s worth noting that funding applications can be incredibly diverse and often complicated if not addressed with the proper information and context. For instance, all grant and loan programs have their own unique deadlines, allocations, eligibility criteria, project guidelines, and other factors to consider. The reality is that maintaining an in-depth understanding of core details (including a program’s purpose, timing, and how its applications are assessed) can be exceedingly difficult for most businesses. This is the reason Mentor Works, based in Guelph, Ontario, focuses on educating businesses on the funding available to them, as well as assisting in streamlining the application process if a business requires additional support.
To simplify the government funding landscape a little, here are five areas currently providing financial support to projects around the country.
Support Funding for COVID-19
Predictably, and unfortunately, one of the most heavily funded areas of government support currently revolves around financial aid to help businesses during the global COVID-19 pandemic. The Government of Canada continues to push programs such as the Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF) and the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS) to help offset employee wages, purchases of personal protective equipment (PPE), and to simply stay afloat during hard times.
Research and Development
Research and development projects support innovation and enable Canadian businesses to achieve competitive market expansion. Innovation funding is available for all types of businesses that seek growth for their products and/or services. There are a variety of government funding programs available to offset R&D costs and help companies stretch their innovation-based budgets; one example is the Canada Media Fund, which supports the creation and commercialization of interactive digital media projects.
Capital and Tech Adoption
Canadian businesses can access capital and tech adoption funding that offsets the purchase of innovative technologies to support the improvement of business performance. An example of this type of government funding program is the Strategic Innovation Fund (SIF), a program that provides large-scale grants and/or loans for advanced industrial and technological projects.
Developing a strategy for global expansion is a great step towards sustainable, achievable business growth, yet few companies leverage the financial resources and support that help guide exporting projects.
Government grant programs such as the CanExport Program help offset costs associated with exporting, such as digital marketing, producing certifications for industry standards, participating in international trade shows and trade missions, translating materials, marketing research, hiring international market development assistance, and more.
Grants for Hiring and Training
Last but not least, there are a variety of Canadian government grants for the hiring and training of qualified applicants, with ongoing support for future business growth plans. Funding programs such as the Canada Job Grant (CJG) help companies hire or retrain staff, improve their effectiveness, and train staff in new areas such as advanced technologies or operational processes.
The Mentor Works team of experienced grant writers work directly with clients to design and implement tailored solutions to support business growth. They work with Canadian businesses to develop dynamic government funding plans that support all areas of business investments. Their clients are awarded an average of $180,000 in grants, and an average of $2.4 million in loans per year.
Alena Barreca is a marketing coordinator at Mentor Works in Guelph, Ontario. She enjoys utilizing her creative and analytical skills to bring educational awareness about government funding to Canadian businesses. You can find her on LinkedIn or Twitter.