Supporting BC’s small businesses through technology: BC Tech’s program to help small businesses pivot and thrive

BC Tech believes that today, every company is a tech company. With the impact of Covid-19 public health measures significantly impacting BC’s economy it is today more true than ever. Technology is a tool – for efficiency, for speed, for reach, for profitability and for growth. Every company, however small, can use technology to make their business more resilient and better equipped to face the future.  

For over a year BC Tech has been supporting businesses across BC through our HyperTech program which enables companies to identify and adopt technology to reach more customers and grow revenue. Adopting technology was always an accelerator of  business success, and the pandemic has reinforced this and brought the HyperTech program to the forefront. 

A new component of the program is BC Tech’s Virtual Connection Day which matches small and medium sized non-tech businesses with a technology expert through a one-hour virtual meeting. The technology expert conducts a short review of the business and provides suggestions on new technologies and processes to adopt. The participating companies choose if they need advice on digital marketing, e-commerce and/or remote working. 

BC Tech has seen an overwhelming response to the Virtual Connection Day program with over 160 applications from small and medium sized businesses in every corner of the province. In our first three sessions we connected 65 businesses with a technology expert and we have plans to do much more going forward. 

The companies supported were in a wide variety of sectors, from retail to manufacturing to transportation. 

“It was great to connect with an industry expert who was able to provide some much-needed advice and guidance in terms of what direction to head in for my digital marketing strategy. I will now focus on a paid social media plan to get the ball rolling with the new campaign we are launching”  —Clothing shop in Vancouver, BC

BC Tech was proud to partner with Kootenay Association for Science and Technology (KAST) for a Virtual Connection Day for companies in the Kootenays, supporting businesses from Castlegar, Invermere, Nelson and Rossland, amongst others. Ensuring a match between local consultants and local businesses is a key part of BC Tech’s Virtual Connection Day program, ensuring the connections made are resilient and continue after the day is over.  

The impact of BC Tech’s work is felt immediately to support the participating companies to pivot during the pandemic and – importantly – also sets them up for future success. 

“Our consultant for the Virtual Connection Day provided some very valuable and creative ideas to offer digital and virtual services to rural and remote communities that we serve. We will use these new ideas to serve everyone through the pandemic and to also continue them when things return to normal to better connect with small towns that don’t have businesses offering our services.” —Bike shop in Creston, BC. 

Successes included:

  • Advising a massage clinic on technology platforms which would enable them to streamline bookings and payments and free up time to run more appointments
  • Supporting an early childhood education provider to review technology and develop a new program for virtual homeschooling to continue to support local children
  • Helping a farm learn how to rank higher in google and use social media advertising to sell their produce
  • Teaching a bricks-and-mortar hat shop about new platforms to sell their products

“We are a small business in a rural BC community and were happy to connect with a tech expert who gave us another perspective on our computer set-up and connection issues. We will be now moving more of our work to the cloud so that we are not as reliant on our server.” —Consultancy business in Nakusp, BC 

In response to high demand for the program, we are launching the following events this month:

Virtual Connection Day – 9 July 

E-Commerce – 23 July

Virtual Connection Day – 30 July

 

BC Tech thanks all of our program partners and sponsors for their support.

Sponsors

Partners

Board of Trade in the Kootenays