What is the Small Business Digital Adaptation Program?
The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program is an initiative that will allow eligible businesses to trial and then receive access to digital products, tools and training they can use to build digital capability in their day-to-day operations.
On 13 September 2020, the Victorian Government announced the Small Business Digital Adaptation Program, a $20 million initiative to help Victorian sole traders, micro and small businesses adapt to a digital operating environment. The program is open to Victorian businesses from all industry sectors and places are limited.
The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program will help businesses to embed the use of practical digital tools that support their trading model and performance.
Through the program, businesses can register to trial selected digital business management tools to adapt websites, transition to e-commerce and manage finances, from suppliers who have partnered with the Victorian Government. After the trial period, registered businesses can purchase a product they have trialed and apply for a rebate of $1,200 to access that product for 12 months.
Registered businesses must purchase or subscribe to a digital product available under this program before applying for the rebate. Proof of purchase will be required. Businesses will need to pay the ongoing costs of access to their digital product after the first 12 months covered by the rebate.
The program also offers free digital adaptation training and workshops to help registered businesses adopt and implement digital tools in their business.
Products chosen by eligible businesses must be:
- a new product not currently used by the business, or
- an upgrade of an existing product with additional product features providing specific digital adaptation capability (for example, upgrading an existing website to an e-commerce site), or
- a product available under the program that has been used by the business before (more than one year ago) that it would like to resume using.
The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program will not cover the cost of:
- renewals of existing product or software licences, or
- minor updates to existing products (for example, a software version update), or
- products that are not available under the program.
Registered businesses can participate in training and workshops shown in the training calendar available on the dedicated program page after registering.
Businesses who have existing products and software purchased outside of this program are also able to attend workshops promoted via the Business Victoria website.
The Small Business Digital Adaptation Program is for small businesses, sole trader, and micro businesses. To be eligible for the program an applicant must:
- operate a business located in Victoria
- hold an Australian Business Number (ABN)
- have held that ABN on 13 September 2019
- be registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST) on 13 September 2020.
Not-for-profit entities that are not registered for GST and are registered with the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profit Commission are eligible to apply.
Businesses that are not required by relevant taxation legislation to be registered for GST are eligible to apply.
Applicants must meet the eligibility criteria and agree to the conditions outlined in the program guidelines.
Applicants also need to attest that they are currently operating and intend to adapt their business to a digital operating environment.
Businesses will be ineligible for the program if any information in their application is found to be deliberately false or misleading.
To qualify for a purchase rebate the business must purchase a digital product available under the program.
An eligible business, as defined by its ABN, can only receive one purchase rebate of $1,200 to cover 12 months’ access to a digital product available under this program.
Applications close 31 March 2021.