Ours is a big country, but Canadians know that small and medium are beautiful too. And when it comes to Canada’s economy, small and medium-sized businesses are key drivers of growth. In fact, they account for the vast majority – 99.8 per cent – of the country’s businesses and employ close to 90 per cent of Canada’s private sector workforce.
Governments play a crucial role in helping Canada’s small and medium-sized firms flourish. Governments at all levels – from provincial and territorial to the Government of Canada – offer a wide variety of programs and services designed to help businesses innovate, create jobs and grow Canada’s economy. But these programs and services can only help if people are aware of what’s available and how to access what the government has to offer.
Now there is a place for Canadian businesses to find out what government can do to help them start, grow or access new markets, all in one location. Last year, the Government of Canada launched the digital platform innovation.canada.ca, a one-stop shop for government programs and services.
This fast, free and interactive platform can help businesses at every stage of development, from start-up to scale-up as well as those ready to go global. By answering a few simple questions, businesses can access more than 1,000 programs and services from various levels of government. The platform uses the basic information a business provides to serve up the programs and services likely to be most relevant to that business in that location at that stage of its growth.
Business owners say they don’t have time to sort through a myriad of government websites to figure out what programs might fit their needs. Some hire experts to do it for them, while others abandon the search altogether. The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) noted that small business owners have difficulty finding the information they need on Government of Canada and other government websites, landing the sites on CFIB’s 2019 list of top red tape offenders.
Innovation.canada.ca makes it simpler and easier for entrepreneurs to find the right government services for their business, saving them time and money. Business owners provide details of what they are looking for, such as funding, tax credits, wage subsidies, research facilities and expert advice. The platform then helps them find programs and services to address their needs and explains them in plain language so businesses can easily understand what they are about.
“Innovation.canada.ca is the one-stop resource for every entrepreneur in Canada to plug into support to start and scale up successful businesses,” said Victoria Lennox, Co-Founder of Startup Canada. “Innovation.canada.ca opens doors for start-up founders and small business owners to sources of funding, training, talent, and more. Innovation.canada.ca is a trusted tool for every entrepreneur.”
In just one year since its launch, innovation.canada.ca has welcomed more than half a million visitors to its platform and helped refer nearly 200,000 visitors to specific government programs for more details.
And the platform will continue to be upgraded to make finding government programs simpler, such as by allowing Canadians to create profiles, save their favourites, and receive notifications of new opportunities to help their businesses grow.
Bookmark innovation.canada.ca today and find programs and services that could help you grow from here!
There are more than 1.1 million small and medium-sized businesses in Canada, accounting for more than 52 per cent of Canada’s GDP generated by the private sector.
In 2019, as part of its Doing Business rankings, the World Bank ranked Canada third out of 190 countries for starting a new business venture.
Visit innovation.canada.ca to find programs and services for your business. Grow from here.