This program ended on March 31, 2021. Sign up for our mailing list to be the first to know if and when it re-opens.
We can match you with a local business coach ready to help you build an action plan to get online, at no cost and no obligation.
We know COVID-19 has created a new normal. New norms, new restrictions, and your business needs to keep running. We also know businesses like yours are fundamental to BC’s economy. This program is focused on helping local businesses in 6 regions of BC.
match you with business coaches in your area to help you:
The Digital Economy: Rapid Response + Resiliency Program (DER3) can help you identify changes you can make today so you can better engage with the digital economy. Our experts have decades of experience of how you can leverage digital tools to get your business online.
Our expert will be available to you at no cost, and the time commitment depends on your specific needs. If we can’t help you with implementing the actions we recommend, we will make suggestions on who can.
You can apply for this program if your businesses has less than 500 employees and is based in:
The program is a no cost/no obligation program. The primary services of the program are free, and anyone living in one of the delivery regions can sign up. For small-medium sized businesses (individuals and non-profits) there's a lot the program can offer at no cost. However, if needed, engagements with digital service providers or consultants (as independent businesses) will have various costs depending on the scope of your requirements. For example, we can tell you what digital tools or platforms may fit for your business, and in many cases we can tell you how to use them (DIY) but we can’t build your website for you. If/when you need to hire someone we can also offer advice to ensure you’re considering the right things in the right order. We can review your needs more specifically when you apply to the program.
No, any business can apply regardless if you have an existing online presence or not.
Yes, we can help. After you complete the application form, we will do an initial assessment of what we think you might want to consider and we will then contact you to learn more and see what’s possible. We work with you one step at a time to move you further along the path to digital transformation.
Yes! Some of the biggest businesses of our time started in recession; Google and Facebook started during the dotcom crash and Uber and Airbnb started during the 2008 financial crisis. If you have what it takes, with a big vision or just a great small business idea, now might be a great time to start!
The appropriate DER3 delivery partner will reach out within 3-5 business days. These expert advisors will listen to the needs of your businesses, meet you where you’re at, and seek to understand where you want to go. The program will build meaningful relationships and lay the foundation of successful hybrid (bricks & mortar, and online) business model development.
This program is delivered by a network of experienced mentors and subject matter experts in both business and the digital economy. With the help of our advisory team we’re confident that we can provide solid advice on almost any topic. We also can direct questions to various industry partners or other agencies (subject matter experts and digital service providers).
We have a wide variety of resources, guides, and best-practices for getting things done in the digital economy, which we can utilize to help you get started. We don’t offer skills training courses, but we can point you in the right direction for that too.
Your time commitments depend on you, and how much time you invest toward taking action on the solutions that we will provide you with. Our time commitments to your needs will depend on our assessments of your issues or challenges. If we can’t help you with implementing the actions we recommend, then we will make suggestions on who can.
At the end of the program, we require participants to fill out brief survey to report key metrics. Any information you report will be confidential and it will be used in aggregate form to determine regional outcomes and overall efficacy of DER3.
All meetings will be over the phone, online video, or via email Q&A. Whatever works for you.
This program will not provide any grants and cannot help with core infrastructure.
Like with many COVID crisis response programs we are monitoring things on a weekly basis. However, this program intake ends on September 14, 2021.
In April 2020, in partnership with Island Coastal Economic Trust (ICET), Innovation Island Technology Association (IITA) created and launched the Digital Economy Restart, Recover, Reimagine Program (DER3) Program. The DER3 program was created to tackle the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis in the Vancouver Island region. and ICET’s initial funding was the catalyst for the first phase of program delivery. In August 2020, with funding support of WD through Innovate BC, the DER3 program will be scaled province-wide under the BC Technology Sector Resiliency Program, developed by Innovate BC.
Kelly Corbett, Artist
“Fraser Lake has had a rough few years since the Endako Mine shut down and when the pandemic hit, it was just one more thing for me to worry about. I knew that I should be selling online but my POS system wouldn't allow it. The DER3 team helped me find $20,000 in grant money and upgrade my system. The implementation of our e-commerce system is now well on its way. I can't thank the team enough for bringing this program to rural BC!"
Rob King, Fraser Lake Ace Building Centre
Cam Gillies, Eagle-Eye Tours
Janette Fessenden, Bliss Float Centre
My experience with DER3 has been FANTASTIC; My business has been pushed to move to an online based platform; however, there is a lot to learn to be able to be competitive and survive. DER3 has given me individual support through professional guidance on how to market my online business in different areas such as social media and my website. This is the key to success online. Thanks to the DER3 program, I feel more confident on what I need to focus on to be successful."
Alicia Belmont, Mexican Treasures
Erica Mattson, Erica Mattson Communications & Culture