When it comes to people, anything that may be tough to do, confusing or time consuming we tend to back away or delay it. It is no different to government funding and small business owners. Maybe even more so, entrepreneurs cringe at the idea of having to apply for government funding and fill out those long, confusing applications. But what if you had the government funding cheat sheet?
Let me tell you right away, there is no cheat sheet to applying or obtaining government funding. There however is a check list you can follow to help guide you on the right path to successfully finding the right programs for your small business.
As a small business owner in the UK, or any part of the world really, starting or expanding a small business may be difficult – but it’s no reason to back away.
Government funding, provided in the forms of grants, loans and financial assistance can go a long way if successfully obtained in making your business dreams come true.
So what exactly is the “government funding cheat sheet”?
The first step to making a successful business is having a functional business plan. A business plan acts as a road map to success. If your plan works on paper, there is no reason if followed, why it would not function successfully.
A business plan will also help you when you are actually applying to government funding schemes, as it will provide the funding agencies a sneak preview into your business and the chance of success.
The following are the steps you need to take when searching for government funding:
- Get yourself a business plan
- Write down what you need funding for (equipment, office space, employees, marketing…etc)
- Write down why you need funding for the above
- Figure out how much you actually need (real need, not just a number)
- Figure out how well you will do if you obtain the funding
- Find the schemes available where you meet the criteria for funding
- Start Applying
Keep in mind that funding is not always free money, but it could be low interest loans, partial contributions or even tax credits. Do not apply for funding if you don’t need it as it can also hurt your business if not used properly.
When having your facts and figures straight, finding the schemes may be challenging, so be sure to reach out and get help, or use tools such as the Funding Calculator Tool to find assistance and schemes which may be available for your type of business.
Remember, giving up is not an option if you want to succeed with your small business. Applying once and being denied never hurt anybody. Instead, go through your plan once again, make adjustments and keep applying. With hundreds of government funding schemes available, and new ones being introduced all the time be sure to be on the lookout.