Canadian government grants can provide critical support to small businesses, investors, non-profits, and research institutions. These funds exist to save you money while helping you scale up your business. Read on for some tips that may help ease the pain of applying for government funding.
Understanding the funding source
The logical first step to applying for funding is understanding where the funding is coming from. In Canada, funding for SMEs can be classified as government or non-government funding. Non-government funding comes from a private organization. From farming and agriculture to digital media and tech – many organizations want to support individuals and businesses within their niche markets.
You’re likely most familiar with government funding. Whether provincial or federal or even municipal, understanding government as the source of funding is fairly straightforward. But, the application process is a bit more complicated.
Finding your funding
Once you understand where the money is coming from, you can better understand how to find grants and funding opportunities. The funding is out there, you just have to know where to look. In fact, millions of dollars of funding goes unused in Canada every year because companies don’t even know it exists. That’s why one of our partner organizations (Pocketed) created a grant matching platform that uses AI software to match businesses with the grants they are eligible for. We recommend you check it out to find the right grants for your organization.
Applying for funding
The hard part starts once you’ve decided which grants to apply for. Since every grant has different criteria and eligibility requirements, it will take time to create a winning application for each one.
If you’re applying for multiple grants that require a lengthy application, it may be worth hiring a grant writer. But if that’s not an option for your business, don’t be discouraged: you can write a successful application on your own. Our previous blog post provides some great tips for SMEs looking for funding, many of which are applicable to the grant writing process.
Keep in mind that all government funding has a specific goal and purpose. For example: the SR&ED Tax Credits program’s goal is to foster scientific research and experimental development within Canada’s economy. Knowing that, when applying for funding you should highlight how your business or project furthers their goals.
Simple as it sounds, details are also important when it comes to government funding. Many applications have strict guidelines and deadlines. A simple mistake can nullify the whole application. Pro-tip: have multiple people from different departments in your organization review the application before submitting. You never know who will catch what you miss!
In the hustle and bustle of business and our day to day lives, we often speed through tasks that we shouldn’t. Taking time to read the fine print in government funding is a crucial step that many people skip. Little details in the terms and conditions can make or break your eligibility. Stopping to thoroughly review those details will save you time and money.
If you’ve been approved for funding but haven’t received the capital yet, you may be eligible for one of our financing programs. Check them out here! Or reach out to the team at firstname.lastname@example.org.