$2M has been made available to fund service providers to assist small businesses affected by ex-Tropical Cyclone Oswald and associated rainfall and flooding.
The Small Business Advisory Services program Queensland Natural Disaster Assistance (SBAS QNDA) Customer Guidelines stem from the Ministerial Guidelines and are designed to provide potential applicants with the information they will need in order to make an informed decision as to whether they should apply for funding under the Small Business Advisory Services program. The guidelines also outline the information that potential applicants will need to include in an application. Applicants and those responsible for the administration of the program will generally operate in accordance with these guidelines. Potential applicants should read these guidelines in their entirety, as well as the associated application form and sample funding agreement, prior to making a decision to submit an application.
In light of increasing pressures on businesses to adapt quickly to changes in their operating environment, the Small Business Advisory Services program Queensland Natural Disaster Assistance (SBAS QNDA) has been developed in response to ex-Tropical Cyclone Oswald (and associated rainfall and flooding). The Small Business Advisory Services program Queensland Natural Disaster Assistance will provide small businesses in Queensland, with access to low cost business advice, including tailored knowledge and advisory services to meet the needs of their businesses and providing referral services to government programs. The initiative would be targeted towards improving management capability, business skills and / or financial management skills of participating small businesses in Queensland that are directly or indirectly impacted by ex-Tropical Cyclone Oswald (and associated rainfall and flooding).
On 28 February 2013, The Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Minister for Small Business Chris Bowen jointly announced, that there would be a new competitive, merit based funding round to eligible applicants, for example Business Enterprise Centres (BECs) and Registered Business Organisations (RBOs), to provide high quality, low cost advisory services and targeted towards improving management capability, business skills and / or financial management skills of small businesses in Queensland that are affected directly or indirectly by ex-tropical cyclone Oswald (and associated rainfall and flooding).
The objective of the Queensland Natural Disaster Assistance Small Business Advisory Services program is to maximise the innovation, sustainability, productivity and/or growth potential of the participating small businesses through access to low cost business advisory services.
AusIndustry, on behalf of the Australian Government, is seeking to fund suitable organisations to deliver high quality, low cost business advisory services to small businesses in Queensland.
- Applications must be focused on providing business advisory skills for participating small businesses in Queensland
- Applications must be relevant, providing business advisory services that will contribute to maximising the sustainability, productivity and/or growth potential of the participating small businesses.
Examples of the advisory services the project could provide include:
- Business Management Skills: This may include advice on general business management including human resources, Work and health Safety, Intellectual Property, legal issues, supply-chain management, e-commerce take-up and the use of information technology and broadband.
- Financial Management Skills: This may include advice on accounting practices, cash flow, guidance on available banking and finance products, leasing guidance and credit management.
- Business Planning Advice: This may include a diagnostic assessment of individual small businesses, followed by business planning advice that meets the needs of small businesses incorporating things such as business continuity, succession planning and marketing plans.
- Mentoring and Networking for Business: This may include one-on-one, group sessions and networking opportunities for small businesses.
- General Business Advice: This may include providing advice and tailored knowledge to small businesses, including recommendations about government programs and regulatory compliance. Successful applicants will be required to promulgate information about business support measures, on behalf of the Australian Government.
- Applications must be practical and be oriented towards action learning for participants to build business skills and/or organisation capability, and may include mentoring.
- Business advisory services must be delivered in a flexible manner that suits the needs of participant small businesses. The business advisory services will cater for the specific needs of women and other client groups as appropriate.
Funding under the Small Business Advisory Services program Queensland Natural Disaster Assistance may support operational, infrastructure or other costs or expenses that are directly involved in the delivery of the project up to 10% of the value of the total grant (GST exclusive). Examples of particular items that may be supported, where they can be justified, include:
- rent for additional office space
- administrative operational costs, including project audit costs and insurance fees
- purchase of equipment relevant to the delivery of the project such as computers, laptops and phones
- purchase, upgrade or lease of a motor vehicle.
At the time of submitting an application for funding, the applicant must meet all of these eligibility requirements:
- be a not-for-profit organisation
- be incorporated under a relevant law of the Commonwealth, State or Territory. TAFEs are excluded from this requirement
- have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
- be a BEC or a RBO
- be able to clearly demonstrate the capacity to deliver high quality, low cost business advisory services to small businesses.
Additionally, if successful, applicants must have the following insurances for the term of the funding agreement:
- workers compensation, as required by law
- professional indemnity for an amount of no less than $3 million per claim
- public liability for an amount of no less than $10 million per claim (or occurrence giving rise to a claim)
- assets insurance (where applicable).
Funding allocations would be up to $100,000 (GST exclusive) per annum.
Applications close 5pm Australian Eastern Standard Time (AEST) on Wednesday 10 April 2013.
Writing a good quality grant application is a critical element in the application process. An application needs to be well thought through, written concisely, have clear objectives and purpose, and show clear links to the objectives of the grant guidelines.