Standard business practices have changed. The world has become increasingly more globalized and with it, the technological revolution has forged a digital landscape unlike anything else. To deal with these digital changes, the Government of Canada announced the Canada Digital Adoption Program (CDAP) which was a part of the 2021 federal budget.
“Our government is partnering with Canadians to invest, grow and succeed in the global economy.”– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development
The intention of the CDAP program is to help support small to medium sized enterprises (SMEs) that need to make digital adoption a priority to survive in this new digital age. The CDAP is committing $1.4 billion in investments over a four-year period, starting in 2021, that will be delivered through two streams:
- The Grow Your Business Online stream which is structured to support small businesses leverage e-commerce opportunities through micro-grants; and
- The Boost Your Business Technology stream which is geared towards helping businesses that require more advanced technological updates, such as industrial companies in processing and manufacturing.
Stream #1 Grow Your Business Online
The Grow Your Business Online stream of the Canadian Digital Adoption Program is supporting up to 90,000 small businesses that have yet to optimize on the opportunities of e-commerce by adopting digital technology. Successful applicants represent SMEs in hard-hit industries such as restaurants, tourism and recreation, and start-ups. This stream is also supporting up to 11,000 young digital advisors in Canada with micro-grants, should they be able to use their skills and practices to help the aforementioned SMEs transition accordingly.
Eligible applicants received up to $2,400 to supplement the expenses of implementing digital technologies.
Please note that the application intake period for this program is now closed. However, application intakes for the succeeding stream, are still open.
Stream #2 Boost Your Business Technology
The Boost Your Business Technology stream of the Canadian Digital Adoption Program is providing SMEs with the opportunity to use government funding support to strategically adopt new technologies for business. Food processing operations, manufacturing companies, service providers, and other industry stakeholders will be partnered with digital advisors that have been vetted and approved by the CDAP. Collaboratively, both parties will work to develop a digital adoption plan to reach an articulated goal in a timely fashion.
Amount of Funding
This stream is offering grants that will cover up to 90% of eligible costs for up to $15,000 to organize and implement a digital adoption initiative for SMEs.
- Professionals with a post-secondary designation in a digital technology-related field such as computer science, engineering, business, digital or information technology. An MBA or CPA is preferred;
- Professionals should have over five years of experience in offering digital tech services and advice;
- Applicants must have a readily available list outlining three individual organizations as reference for past digital technology services rendered;
- Experience with developing digital business strategies, models, and products;
- Applicants should be well versed in technology systems, such as CRMs, that is applicable to a variety of different industries;
- Experience with digital technology selection processes and analytic strategies;
- Not be a technology vendor or offer third party digital vendor services of any kind;
- Should be able to clearly and effectively outline a digital adoption plan in its entirety;
- Can legally work in Canada; and conform to required code of conduct when delivering service to CDAP clients; and
- Must submit to a criminal record check when requested.
For a comprehensive understanding of this program, please review the full outline.
Eligible applicants will be digital advisors that are able to successfully help SMEs develop a digital marketing plan that outlines the following:
- Tailored information that outlines the state of the SME at beginning of project and how their current digital footprint may be improved upon to reach an ideal outcome;
- A complete report outlining a variety of digital adoption products and systems that may be used to reach the proposal’s goals;
- A complete report outlining the financial costs of implementing said digital adoption processes;
- The plan should outline how new or existing employees may be trained to adopt and carry-out the digital adoption plan;
- A recommended course of action that is projected to have the best outcomes for the SME, including corporate culture and good governance practices;
- A well thought out implementation roadmap that will touch on timelines, costs, resources, and more;
- The plan should highlight how this technology may be used to enhance the customer experience;
- A complete consideration of possible legal and technological considerations that must be made for safety and security purposes; and
- The plan should outline any regulatory requirements that may be necessary to consider during the digital adoption journey.
The Boost your Business Technology stream is accepting applications from Digital Advisors. However, the application intake from not-for-profit-organizations that coordinate work placements are now closed.
Learn More About Government Funding Opportunities
If your business needs government funding programs, there are many available. Leveraging grants and loans can be an effective way to complete hiring and training, perform research and development, and secure capital & tech adoption.
When applying for one of these funding programs, please reach out to a Mentor Works representative.