Digital Growth Vouchers
With digital technology playing an increasingly important role in helping businesses to grow – can you afford to miss out? Our Digital Growth Vouchers offer eligible firms help to fund their digital/IT investment.
The latest phase of our Digital Growth Voucher scheme closed on Friday 26th October 2018 and saw over 350 businesses apply for funding assistance.
Our vouchers will fund at least 50% of the cost of a project, however, there is the chance you could receive a higher level of funding depending upon the levels of digital transformation, business performance, productivity and innovation your project will achieve. The total project value must be between £4,000 – £12,000.
Our Digital Growth Voucher scheme is a competitive process where proposals are compared to each other to determine those that offer the biggest potential for business growth and digital maturity. The scheme is currently closed, but we will announce details on our website of when the next phase will open.
Our revised guidance for applicants and intermediaries is available to read – click the graphic opposite.
Eligible Investment projects for a Voucher
Digital Growth Vouchers are intended for the acquisition of I.T hardware, software purchases or upgrades to digital connectivity. Funding can only be used for the purchasing of equipment or software and not for the on-going revenue costs of leasing them.
When applying for a voucher it is important that applicants describe the purpose for which the acquired asset or investment will be used and how it will benefit business performance, since our funding is there to help to achieve ‘Additionality’ i.e. to add value. It cannot be used to merely replace old equipment or infrastructure, where no value is added to a firm’s performance, capability or capacity. Therefore, voucher applications which do not demonstrate how the investment will generate any economic growth or impact for the business will be rejected.
Examples of eligible hardware/software solutions for a voucher
- New laptops, desktops or tablet computers, VOIP telephony or networking devices e.g. routers and servers, etc.
- Enhanced digital connectivity – particularly when this leads to download speeds exceeding 30 mbps. However, the grant will only be able to cover the cost of the installation not any on-going revenue costs.
- The acquisition of new software to manage the business including a CRM or ERP. The grant can cover integration and consultancy costs too, but this is capped at 40% of the total project cost.
Example: A manufacturing business in Huddersfield is aiming to grow and achieve digital transformation by selling its products online through the commissioning of a new e-commerce website. All products made by firm will be available for customers to purchase.
The website has a total cost of £10,000 (excluding VAT) – which includes costs relating to its design, development and integration. The firm can apply for a Digital Growth voucher worth between £2,000 to £10,000. The business owner expects to see employment growth of 10% and turnover to increase by 20% over the next two years, as a result of this investment.
If you are interested in applying for a Digital Growth Voucher please follow the steps below when the next phase or our scheme opens:
- Check your eligibility and if eligible you will be taken to the application form.
- Applicant businesses that meet the criteria in the Eligibility Checklist should complete the online form. Businesses are required to complete all sections of the application form, with particular consideration to the impact of the funding/investment upon their business growth and development. Proposals with poor or insufficient economic return (in terms of job creation or business expansion) relative to the value of the Voucher are unlikely to be successful.
- We will assess your application.
- Obtain three quotations for your digital transformation project costs (Three quotes are required per item). We understand that this can take some time to complete, leading to a delay in the issuing of a Digital Growth Voucher, as such, interested applicants may wish to start sourcing quotes at the earliest opportunity.
- If application approved we will send you a Funding Agreement.
- On receiving the returned Funding Agreement you can commission your suppliers.
- Once the work has been completed and proof of this is supplied via a claim form we will arrange payment to you.
Businesses receiving a Digital Growth Voucher can also take advantage of our other strands of support – our Connectivity Voucher and Digital Knowledge Exchange.
If you have any questions then don’t hesitate to contact us.