Business Support Program

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The Indigo Business Support program was established to assess and respond to the business disruption caused by the 2019-2020 bushfires and Covid19 pandemic. 

In 2020 and 2021 the Business Support Program achieved the following objectives:

  • Gathered information from businesses to discover support needs prioritised by industry. 
  • Provided information on services, activities and initiatives available to support businesses. 
  • Strengthened the resilience of our business community and its response to crisis.
  • Collated insights and information gained so that council can advocate on behalf of local businesses affected.

The program was rolled out in three phases.

Phase 1 - Listen

From December 2020 to June 2021 the Business Support Team has met with 732 businesses and engaged with a total of 1181 via email, phone, in person and zoom.

These meetings allowed the team to:

  • Gain insight into the effects of COVID-19 on your business
  • Refer to support agencies
  • Provide information on support currently available
  • Learn about the businesses that make up Indigo

From these meetings, the Business Support Team have derived five key themes that will be the starting point for Phase 2 and 3 of the program.

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Phase 2 - Support

Phase 2 of the Business Support Program focussed on the short term needs for business by addressing four priorities:

  • Referral
    Ensuring business owner/operators know what support is available and how to access it. Also bringing the support closer to our businesses.
  • COVIDSafe Business
    Engaging a COVIDSafe Business Concierge who will act as a resource for businesses and support them to become COVIDSafe compliant.
  • Funding Identification
    Identifying funding appropriate to your business goals.
  • Business Strengthening
    Providing the Grow Your Business workshop series, available here and more.

Phase 3 - Respond

The final element of the program is about providing businesses with outcomes in terms of the five identified key themes.   We can work for business through:

  • Upskilling 
  • Advocacy
  • Development
  • Information Sharing

So far we have delivered a number of initiatives and will continue to work towards building our connection with the business community.    A key achievement has been to adopt CRM software specifically designed to enhance business engagement for economic development purposes.   We now have an extensive business database, which can be easily updated, giving council an excellent picture of the number and diversity of enterprises operating in our shire.  We can use this software to communicate effectively with individual businesses and whole sector groups in a targeted and timely manner.    We can continue to record your feedback and input your ideas as to how best we can support business in 2022, a year that continues to produce challenges in so many ways.

If you are starting a business or changing your business in some way, we would love to hear from you.   You can call us for a chat or to book a meeting with the team today.

T: 02 6028 1157
E: recovery@indigoshire.vic.gov.au