The government has launched Help to Grow: Digital, a scheme designed to support smaller businesses embrace digital technology for the first time and help them grow.
Under the scheme, eligible businesses can receive discounts of up to £5,000 off the retail price of approved digital accounting and CRM software from leading technology suppliers.
In addition, businesses can access practical, specialised support and advice on how to choose the right digital technologies to boost their growth and productivity through a new online platform.
To qualify for the discount, businesses can be from any sector, but must be based in the UK and registered with Companies House or be a registered society on the Financial Conduct Authorities Mutuals Register. They must also employ between 5 and 249 people, have been actively trading for over 12 months and be purchasing the approved software for the first time.
Approved software includes Zestia, Zymplify, Livepoint Software Solutions, Esteiro Business Solutions, Deskpro, Sage, Intuit and E-crunch.
Calling small and medium businesses “the backbone of our economy”, the chancellor of the exchequer Rishi Sunak said: “Help to Grow: Digital will help them to grow and flourish by adopting new technologies that are proven to improve processes and boost productivity, levelling up their digital technology and skills.”
Mike Cherry, national chair at the Federation of Small Businesses, said: "Small businesses are often keen to embrace new technologies, but we know that one in four lack confidence in their own basic digital skills. For those small firms who are eligible, providing the means to make improvements through projects like this will make a real difference for those that are keen to expand their knowledge and skills.
“Our own research has shown that just 40% of small business owners have used applications like cloud services and online data storage or back-up. It’s crucial that practical changes like this scheme are put in place to help small firms adopt digital technologies, making improvements to their own business and driving growth.
“We’re encouraging as many eligible small firms to apply and make the most of this new scheme.”
To find out how your business can get Help to Grow, visit the GOV.UK Help to Grow page.