Resource Toolkit for Business

Audience: Small-medium business owners or professionals, entrepreneurs

This toolkit helps businesses and entrepreneurs to quickly find helpful resources and advisors to survive, pivot, and grow.

Informational

Better Business Bureau (BBB) tips on COVID-19

Provides information on improving business resiliency, including obtaining loans, protecting credit, recognizing scams / fraud, complying with new health / safety regulations, and protecting against online threats.

Federal Trade Commission (FTC) Business Center

Provides resources to assist businesses establish and improve their capabilities including Advertising & Marketing, Credit & Finance, Privacy & Security, and Industry rules & regulations.

SCORE Coronavirus Small Business Resource Hub

Provides information, webinars, and access to mentors to help small businesses survive, recover, restart and thrive. 

Small Business Majority - COVID-19: DAILY UPDATES FOR SMALL BUSINESSES

Provides information and webinars about Covid-19 implications in the workplace, funding options, and policy developments to help bolster small businesses during this difficult time.

U.S. Chamber of Commerce - Combating the Coronavirus

Coordinates resources to help companies stay afloat and keep paychecks flowing to American workers and families; mobilize the business community to combat the pandemic; and help companies prepare for a safe, successful, and sustainable reopening of the economy.

U.S. Small Business Administration

Assists small business to start, grow, expand, or recover by providing access to counseling, capital, and government contracting expertise.

Guidance from NSA: Selecting and Safely Using Collaboration Services for Telework

Planning

Online Meeting & Collaboration Tools - Commercial

COVID19 has created a need for organizations and individuals to connect and collaborate remotely using conferencing tools.

Businesses and organizations need convenient, affordable, and secure online meeting and collaboration tools.

There are various widely-used online meeting and collaboration tools that are being offered for free for the next few months.

Cisco WebEx Meetings is available by signing up for a free WebEx personal account. The free WebEx Meetings plan offers meetings with 100 participants, HD video, screen sharing, and a personal room for use as long as needed. If you live in a country that is not eligible for free WebEx personal accounts, Enterprise Trials for Cisco WebEx are available. To find out more or to see which countries will have access to Cisco WebEx meetings, check out their help center.

Microsoft offers free and paid versions of its Microsoft Teams messaging and collaboration solution.

Free access to our advanced Google Meet video-conferencing capabilities for all G Suite and G Suite for Education customers globally has been extended to September 30, 2020.

From now until the end of 2020, Intermedia is offering free Intermedia AnyMeeting Pro video conferencing licenses for new customers.

Remote desktop access free for up to 3 months for healthcare providers, K-12 schools, nonprofits & municipalities (no commitment

Remote Access Tools -Commercial

To cope with the current COVID19 disruption, organizations and individuals require flexible mobile and remote work arrangements beyond their traditional workplaces, while ensuring confidential data and systems are protected.

Businesses and organizations need convenient, affordable, and secure remote access tools and management guidance

There are various remote access tools that are being offered for free or with discounts for the next few months. Before implementing remote access products, organizations should carefully evaluate their needs and priorities for protecting their data and devices against the effectiveness, ease of scaling capacity, ownership costs, and technology support overheads of vendor products

(See Protect / Remote Access section)

FTC’s guidance to small businesses about things to consider in securing remote access to your network

TrendMicro has provided free Tools, Apps, and Trials to protect your devices and online activity.

provides tools to securely access your important files, data, and applications from anywhere.

provides secure remote access tools with reduced pricing for a limited time to view or control PCs, Macs, and Linux machines

Microsoft has shared some best practices and product information to help organizations and employees remain productive without increasing cybersecurity risk

Business response to Community Disease Transmission

Information and guidance from trustworthy sources to help businesses rapidly and cost-effectively protect their employees, customers, and partners from the risks of exposure to communicable diseases such as COVID-19.

Businesses receive an overwhelming volume of constantly changing and questionable information, hindering their ability to respond rapidly and effectively.

Various government agencies and private organizations provide information and guidance to help businesses plan, prepare, and respond to community disease transmission.

Productivity Tools - Commercial

During this difficult time of change and disruption, businesses and organizations must be productive and nimble while optimizing cash flow and streamlining operations.

Businesses and organizations need convenient, affordable, and secure online meeting and collaboration tools.

  • Various companies are providing productivity tools for free or at discounts for the next few months, subject to sign-up deadlines and meeting eligibility criteria.
  • Some tools require specialized technology administration skills to install and manage effectively.
  • Businesses and organizations should verify how their data is collected and securely managed by application / tool providers.

Business software and services companies are providing free and discounted products and tools (including conferencing, contact/staff management, financial management, marketing, planning, team productivity/collaboration), and upgrades to more advanced tools, to help organizations be productive during the pandemic.

ImpactCloud companies are mobilizing product, financial, and employee resources to help organizations respond to COVID-19.

This coalition brings together resources from multiple leading brands into a centralized platform to support small businesses. 

TechSoup provides nonprofits, libraries, or foundations in the U.S. with donated or discounted software, hardware, and services.

Financial Applications

  • FreshBooksCloud – FreshBooks offers its all-in-one Small Business Invoicing and Accounting cloud applications with free and discounted pricing. 
  • Intuit QuickBooks – Intuit offers its QuickBooks income and expense tracking software to small businesses at discounts and with free trials for a limited period. Intuit also offers various financial assistance programs to support consumers, small businesses and communities.
  • Sage – Sage provides entrepreneurs and small / medium businesses with integrated accounting, payroll, and payment cloud solutions and software. Information and resources are available to help navigate the current coronavirus pandemic
  • Wave – Wave provides financial management software and personalized help for small businesses with free accounting, invoicing, and receipts, and fee-based payroll and payment services.

Productivity Suites

  • Google G Suite for Nonprofits – Google helps nonprofits collaborate more effectively with smart, secure business apps like Gmail, Docs, Calendar, Drive, and Google Meet. Offered with 1 free and 2 discounted billing plans. Google’s broader response to Covid-19 includes additional assistance and resources.
  • Microsoft Together – Microsoft has offered its Microsoft 365 Business and Office 365 productivity suites free for the first 6 months with an annual commitment (see website for included products and conditions). Microsoft’s broader response to Covid-19 includes additional assistance and resources.
  • Zoho – Zoho has offered relief initiatives and remote working resources to help organizations stay connected with their colleagues and customers.

ECommerce and Payment Business Tools

During this difficult time of change and disruption, entrepreneurs and businesses need to easily and rapidly launch new or scale promising businesses, while optimizing cash flow, staff, and operations.

  • Various companies are providing free trials and discounted pricing for online business tools for the next few months, subject to sign-up deadlines and meeting eligibility criteria.
  • Some tools require specialized technology administration skills to configure, customize, and manage effectively.
  • Entrepreneurs and businesses should verify how their data is collected and securely managed by application / tool providers.

There are various widely-used online meeting and collaboration tools that are being offered for free for the next few months.

E-Commerce

  • eBay “Up & Running” – eBay launched an accelerator program specifically designed to help retailers without an e-commerce presence rapidly transition to selling online. 
  • Shopify – Shopify provides an all-in-one online e-commerce (website, social media, and online marketplaces) and Point of Sale platform to start, run, and grow a business. Includes Free tools to run your business e.g. barcodes, branding, business cards, financial calculators, forms, logos, policy generators, QR codes. 
  • Yahoo Small Business – Yahoo helps small businesses get online with free Website resources for a year. 

Payments

  • Paypal – PayPal’s online service enables businesses and consumers to pay, send money, and accept payments. Businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic can obtain financial assistance.
  • Stripe – Stripe provides versatile online and in-person payment options for e-commerce sites, subscription services, on-demand marketplaces, and nonprofits (fee discount available). Optional applications are available to manage revenue, prevent fraud, and expand internationally. COVID-19 resources for Stripe users are provided. 
  • Square – Square enables sellers to accept Point of Sale (POS) payments via cards and contactless mobile wallets (e.g. Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay), online e-commerce payments, and enables people to send money to friends and family instantly. Businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic can obtain information and tools. 

Financial Assistance

Coronavirus Financial Relief Available to Businesses

Federal, state, local, corporate, non-profit and trade association sponsored resources that may be available to assist your business.

Finance Your Business (USAGov)

Find loans backed by the US government and other funding options. Learn about emergency loans and tax relief available to businesses through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Hello Alice COVID-19 Business Resource Center

Find information about access to funding, e-learning guides, and mentorship. "COVID-19 Business for All Emergency Grant" is still open for applications from small business owners for up to $10,000.

Intuit Aid Assist Tool

Free online tool helps to: 1. check your eligibility for federal assistance (PPP, EIDL), 2. calculate your maximum possible loan amount, 3. calculates the loan forgiveness amount.

Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) Covid-19 Response

Find assistance to the small business community with grants and loans.Financial Services Opportunity Fund: Find assistance for Small Business Owners affected by COVID-19

SBA CARES Grants

Find temporary CARES SBA relief programs to address the COVID-19 outbreak.

Opportunity Fund

Find assistance for Small Business Owners affected by COVID-19

Small Business Grants COVID-19 Relief

Find grants from private organizations and federal agencies for small or women-owned businesses.

Venturize

Find information about small business loans, retirement, and healthcare to empower entrepreneurs to prepare for the impact of COVID-19 on their business and community.

Wells Fargo’s Open for Business Fund

Find support for nonprofit organizations who serve small businesses, particularly businesses owned by underrepresented individuals - a group disproportionately affected by the pandemic - to provide needed capital, offer technical support, and develop long-term resiliency programs.

Business Continuity Planning

Business Resilience 101 Workbook

Resilience best practices, tools, and training to address preparedness issues while building in the flexibility to handle potential business interruptions.

Capital Region Business Resiliency Initiative

This toolkit is designed with the small business in mind, and provides a concise, accessible, action-oriented, easy-to-use guide to creating a resiliency plan for your business.

How And Why To Create A Business Continuity Plan

Guidance for entrepreneurs to address marketing, operations, cost, and revenue challenges in creating business continuity plans.

Prepare My Business - US SBA

Provides small business disaster planning and preparedness resources and tools spanning education, planning, testing, and disaster assistance.

Prevent Business Disruption With a Business Continuity Plan- Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS)

IBHS’s OFB-EZ (Open for Business-EZ) free toolkit can help you build a business continuity plan so you can prepare, respond and recover.

Ready - Department of Homeland Security

Guidance on preparing for various natural disasters or emergencies, business preparedness resources, and a 4-step approach to creating a Business Continuity Plan.

The six-step COVID-19 business continuity plan - ILO Bureau for Employers’ Activities (ILO-ACT/EMP)

Establish the risk profile of an enterprise and the level of vulnerability to COVID-19 in terms of its impact on People, Processes, Profits and Partnerships, and develop an effective risk and contingency system for the business.