Government Support In Business
Businesses are essential for economic growth. They provide employment opportunities and help the government widen its tax base. Recognizing the many benefits, the government offers a variety of services and initiatives to support new businesses so they can gain traction and thrive.
How Does the Government Support Businesses?
There are many government agencies, such as the Small Business Administration (SBA), that provide advice and resources to businesses. Here's how they can help:
- Funding programs: running out of cash is a common reason why small businesses fail. The SBA provides resources and information on a variety of funding programs. It helps businesses figure out which one is the right fit, how much funding they need, and how to approach lenders or venture capitalists.
- Tax credit programs: to encourage businesses to invest in the local economy, the government offers state or local economic development programs to help lower your tax bill and increase your income.
- Business advice: running a business requires a wide range of skillset, from marketing and HR to customer service and finance. Government programs, such as SCORE, pair new businesses with experts in the different areas so they can have access to these resources at no or low cost.
- Market research: The US Census Bureau provides businesses with demographic data about their market at no cost. It also offers training on how to effectively utilize the data.
- Government contracts: landing government contracts allows small businesses to create a steady stream of income even during slow times. The government provides resources to help new businesses search for and land these contracts.
- Intellectual property protection: to encourage the development of innovative ideas, the government and the US Patent and Trademark Office help businesses with trademark protection.
- Business training: most government websites that support businesses offer a variety of training at no cost, e.g., on writing a business plan and getting funding. The Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs) have locations across the US to provide free advice to local businesses.
The Government Helps Businesses Identify the Right Tools For Growth
There are various government agencies that offer advice to help businesses gain traction, including identifying the most appropriate tools and software they can use for the following functions:
- Project management
- Human resources (e.g., payroll and benefits)
- Collaboration and communication
- eCommerce or website
- Email marketing
- Customer relationship management
- Customer service
- Content marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing
- Invoicing, payment processing, and bookkeeping
Go Beyond Features and Functionalities: Security As a Major Consideration
Parsing through the many features of all the software applications can be an overwhelming experience and many businesses may overlook the security measures employed by the platforms to keep their data safe. However, you can't afford to ignore cyber security and data governance -- in 2017, cyber attacks cost small and medium-sized businesses an average of $2,235,000.
Here's how to ensure that your software platforms are secure:
- Certifications and standards: check that your providers have the appropriate certifications and are adhering to the necessary guidelines to protect the security of your information.
- Data governance: the local law in the location where the data resides can affect your selection of a service provider. In addition, encryption and access control should be utilized to ensure the security of your data.
- IT security: ensure that your provider's security policy is in alignment with your internal policy and industry regulation. Also, user access and activity should be auditable in the event that you need to conduct an investigation.
- Backup and recovery: inquire about your provider's backup and recovery plan to ensure that your data is protected and downtime is minimized in the event of a service interruption.
Conclusion: Choosing Software With the Proper Security
Communication is a key component for business success. Choosing the right communication platform can help ensure seamless collaboration and customer service.
Cloud communication software, such as VoIP, offers the various security features you need for your business at an affordable price while providing essential features for today's businesses, such as voice calls, video conferencing, messaging apps, and file sharing to help increase efficiency and reduce cost.
Businesses rely on their technology to empower them to be as productive as possible. With 8x8's world-class technology you get everything your business needs in one place. Call 1-866-879-8647 or fill out an online form to request a no-obligation quote from an 8x8 product specialist.