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New government funding initiative subsidises “IT and digital” advice

Press Release   •   May 30, 2014 10:00 BST

UKITA joins national growth initiative offering £2,000 advice to help small businesses and start-up businesses grow

The national organisation for SME IT companies, the UK IT Association (UKITA), has become part of the government’s £30 million Growth Vouchers programme.

UKITA is one of only two associations whose members are eligible to provide advice on “IT and digital” activity to small businesses in England.

The government has launched the Growth Vouchers programme to identify the type of advice that most benefits small businesses. The Growth Vouchers programme will distribute vouchers to approximately 20,000 small businesses in England.

Half of the businesses will be selected to receive a voucher for up to £2,000 matched funding to help pay for business support in one of five specialist areas.

The programme is running until March 2015 and will offer a 50% 'cash back' voucher worth up to £2,000 to smaller businesses which can be put towards obtaining strategic advice and guidance in the five important areas of IT and digital, finance, marketing, staffing and leadership.

UKITA members will help businesses with up to 50 employees through one-to-one advice and guidance focused on improving their performance over a range of IT and digital areas.

Small businesses with Growth Vouchers funding can access a pool of verified and quality-controlled UKITA IT advisors.

Areas that are eligible for funding include: 

  • Improving the customer online experience
  • Analysing your technology usage
  • Digital project planning
  • Automating your business processes
  • Selling on-line/e-commerce
  • Your online visibility

Helen Brewster, Chair of UKITA, comments: "We are delighted to see that with the innovative Growth Vouchers programme, the government is confirming our view of the vital role that IT and digital now plays in the competitive success of almost every business, whether large or small. In the past, IT was often seen as an unavoidable overhead for businesses rather than a competitive and strategic tool which brings opportunities to drive business growth and success." 

UKITA members are part of an established trade association and they operate under a code of conduct which has a track record of enabling UKITA and its members to participate in funded projects.

Phil Oakley heads up UKITA’s IT/digital advisers’ national group and added: "The timing of the new voucher scheme is excellent because we are in the process of developing a national network of UKITA members who can provide help and

guidance to businesses operating under the UKITA code of practice.”

Businesses who would like to apply for Growth Vouchers to get help with any of the five business areas should go to https://www.gov.uk/apply-growth-vouchers

Or search for accredited advisers on the Marketplace at https://marketplace.enterprisenation.com/

For more details of UKITA, please visit http://www.ukita.co.uk/growthvouchers


About UK IT Association

  • The UK IT Association (UKITA) is a membership organisation and trade association for the small and medium-sized IT and digital sector.
  • It  is a not for profit company which is governed by a Board of Directors elected from among the membership
  • Members of the Trade Association Forum which was established by the CBI in 1997 and signatory to their Code of Practice for trade associations 
  • UKITA provides membership services including certification, directories, press services, marketing support and a public sector IT tenders alerting service as well as lobbying for this sub-sector in the UK and EU
  • Members sign up to a code of conduct which emphasises customer/client care and professionalism. Complaints against members although very rare are investigated and members may receive warnings or be expelled.This give clients comfort that our members are operating under a meaningful code.
  • UKITA was formed in 2002 as the West Midlands IT Association by Advantage West Midlands, one of the 9 English Regional Development Agencies – public funding over 5 years to 2007 was £1m
  • Changed its name to reflect the new UK-wide  geographic focus in 2007 when public funding had tapered off and UKITA became financially self-sufficient
  • UKITA participates in the EU through its membership of PIN SME which is a network of equivalent organisations in EU counties. UKITA also gets involved in funded EU projects and UK public sector projects

About the Growth Vouchers Programme

  • £30m government research project aimed at discovering what incentives would persuade small UK  companies to take strategic advice on matters including IT/digital, marketing, finance, employment, leadership and management
  • Runs from January 2014 until March 2015
  • Provides a 50% ‘cash-back’ voucher up to £2,000 to be spent on strategic advice from members of qualifying membership and professional institutes
  • Details are found at https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/growth-vouchers-programme

Contact details for UKITA

  • Andrew Corbett – Membership Development Director
  • 7 Palmers House, Corve Street, Ludlow SY8 1DB