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MyBizColorado

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Are you looking to start a small business in Colorado? Small businesses make up 97% of all businesses in the state. According to the Small Business Association, small businesses in Colorado employ one million people, nearly half of the private workforce. Now, registering your business has just been made easier. 

MyBizColorado is designed to provide a user-friendly, streamlined experience to communicate with multiple agencies on essential business start-up activities. Participating agencies and partners include the Department of Labor and Employment, Department of Regulatory Agencies, Governor's Office of Economic Development and International Trade, Governor's Office of Information Technology, Secretary of State's Office, the Statewide Internet Portal Authority, and Colorado Interactive. 

Colorado has a reputation for being a business-friendly state and is continuing to uphold its reputation with the release of MyBizColorado. The new system replaces a dated and cumbersome technology called Colorado Business Express. MyBizColorado is user-focused and is accessible on mobile platforms.

With MyBizColorado, you can:

  • Register for a sales tax license
  • Register employees for wage withholding
  • Register employees for unemployment insurance
  • Find resources to help plan a new business an obtain professional licenses

Discover more about MyBizColorado by watching this short video or start registering today.

2018 Colorado State Minimum Wage Increase

Thursday, January 11, 2018

2018 Colorado State Minimum Wage

Effective January 1, 2018 Minimum Wage: $10.20

Tipped Employee Minimum Wage: $7.18
______________________________________________________________________________________
In January 2017, Voters passed Amendment 70, effectively increasing Colorado's minimum wage standards annually by $0.90 each January until Colorado minimum wage reaches $12 per hour in 2020. The minimum wage will be adjusted thereafter annually for cost of living increases. 

The Division of Labor Standards and Statistics has adopted Colorado Minimum Wage Order Number 34 effective January 1, 2018 through December 31, 2018 to reflect the state minimum wage of $10.20 per hour. No more than $3.02 per hour in tip income may be used to offset the minimum wage of tipped employees. 

According to Section 15 of Article XVIII, of the Colorado Constitution, if either of the following two situations applies to an employee, then the employee is entitled to the $10.20 state minimum wage of the $7.18 state tipped employee minimum wage, effective January 1, 2018. 

1. The employee is covered by the minimum wage provisions of the Colorado Minimum Wage Order.
2. The employee is cover by the minimum wage provision of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Employers covered by the Wage Order are required to post the Colorado Minimum Wage Order Poster. Vist Colorado Department of Labor and Employment of Colorado Minimum Wage Order 34 Poster and Fact Sheet.

Image:
unsplash-logo Rob Bye





New Year's Checklist for 2018

Thursday, January 04, 2018

Happy New Year! The end of the year has come and gone! The beginning of 2018 is a great time to review and plan your business and marketing efforts for the New Year. Ask yourself these key questions and set (or reset) measurable goals for the upcoming year!

Marketing Questions:

  1. Is my website up to date?
  2. Are all pages, submission forms, and links working properly?
  3. Are my brochures and business cards up to date with all contact information?
  4. Have I recently logged into all social media accounts to ensure all information is correct and there are no outstanding messages?
  5. Have I recently Googled my name and the name of my business? Ensure your website and correct contact information come up first!
  6. How is my business signage? Is it visible and up to code?
  7. What marketing tools generated my best clients? If you don't have metrics in place, establish them for 2018!
Business Strategy Checklist:
  1. Do I need to review and update my current business plan? (The answer is always YES! Every year!)
  2. Do I need a new business plan?
  3. Review your mission and vision statements with your team. Your team needs to believe your message from the inside, out. Does it need updating? 
  4. Review your goals from 2017. Did you hit your sales goals? Why? Why not?
  5. Review your messaging. Does your content and branding get people to take the action that you want them to take?
  6. Work with your team and SBDC Business Consultant to determine your answers. We encourage you to put them someplace visual to keep them in mind throughout the year.
  7. Most importantly, track your results and adjust your marketing sales strategies accordingly.
Call the East Colorado SBDC to set up an appointment so that we can assist you in meeting your business goals for 2018! 

Thank you to East Colorado SBDC consultant Craig Curl for this checklist! We hope you find it helpful for the year ahead! 

2018 BBB Spark Awards for Entrepreneurship Accepting Applications

Monday, December 18, 2017

The Spark Awards are the BBB's newest awards recognition program to celebrate emerging entrepreneurial businesses whose leaders demonstrate a high level of character, generate a culture that is authentic about its mission, and genuinely connects with their community. Applications and judging for the Spark Awards is based on three principles: Character, culture, and community. The Better Business Bureau is now accepting applications for the 2018 BBB Spark Awards for Entrepreneurship.

Eligibility

The Spark Award is open to for-profit organizations located within BBB Serving Nothern Colorado and Wyoming's service area. Business must be in operation for at least 6 months but no more than 3 years at the time of application (January 2018) Firms need not be BBB accredited but must be in good standing with BBB. 

Entry  Submission

Bring your entrepreneurial organization to life and tell the story of how your business lives out character, culture, and community through online written entries. There is also a required video testimonial component, 3-minute (max). This video should come from you and your team.

Question 1: Character

Explain how you have transformed as a leader, and how that has impacted your business. Because leaders are constantly aiming to grow and improve, share ways that you are planning to progress in the future.

Question 2: Culture

How do you articulate that you value your treasured employees and team? What sort of goals do your teams have, and how do they work together to create a supportive and honest atmosphere, while being purposeful and transparent?

Question 3: Community

How have you given back and shown to your community? Whether it's working with after-school programs or donating to a charity, what ways have you contributed to your community with your time and/or reinvested within your industry?

Video Submission

We want to hear your voice and get the STORY straight from your team! Rally your team and take up this cause on how your business embodies Character, Culture & Community!

Apply Online

Applications are due January 26, 2018. Apply at go.bbb.org/wynco-spark

Become a Vendor at Evans Heritage Day

Monday, July 10, 2017

Evans Heritage Day

The City of Evans is excited to announce the inaugural Evans Heritage Day. This family-friendly community-wide event will be held Saturday, September 16, 2017 in City Park.

Similar to it predecessor EvansFest, the day will begin at 7 am with a pancake breakfast, followed by a parade. Bands, food truck competition, competitive activities, petting zoo - including a zebra!

Become a Vendor!

The City of Evans is looking for vendors to add to the festivities of the day. With an expected turnout of 2,500 people, Evans Heritage Day will provide vendors with a great opportunity to reach community members. Complete a vendor application today!

The Details:

1. The Evans Heritage Day Committee will supply 15'x15' booth space at the City Park in an area designated for vendors.
2. a site map will be provided to all booth vendors.
3. Vendors will be required to supply their own power, tables, signage and all items needed for the operation of their space. Canopies are allowed.
4. Evans Heritage Day Committee will supply space, access, and parking
5. Vendors set up time in City Park is between 7 - 9 am. Vehicles will need to be moved to designated parking by 9 am.
6. Vendors are required to stay open for business until 4 pm.
7. Firecrackers, silly string, champagne poppers, smoke and stink bombs, snap-a-pop or any other explosive devices are prohibited per the Uniform Code Sec. 78.201 & 78.20.
8. Booths must not disturb trees or shrubbery in the park.
9. Vendors are required to clean up their booth space prior to leaving at the end of the event.

The City of Evans, Evans Heritage Day Committee, its members, elected officials, and employees will not assume any responsibility for lost, stolen or damaged exhibits or property. Vendor assumes all risk by participating in the event. 

145k Available through Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Farm Bureau Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge is open again!

The Challenge is a national competition and is directed to agriculture and food entrepreneurs

Who is Eligible

Businesses across agriculture are eligible; including farms, ranches, agritourism, CSAs, food hubs, aquaponics, farm-to-table businesses, local food production and craft breweries.

The Challenge

Participants will compete for:
  • $145,000 in startup funds
  • Opportunity to pitch to multimillion dollar investors
  • Booth Space at the American Farm Bureau Annual Convention
  • Feedback from national business experts
  • Educations on venture capital and expanding their businesses

Apply

The application is open and will close June 30, 2017

Application Process Open for New Certified Small Business Communities

Friday, May 05, 2017

New SBDC Program Aimed to Encourage Entrepreneurship in Rural Areas

The Colorado SBDC Network is now accepting applications for the New Certified Small Business Community program - an initiative designed to assist rural communities with the recruitment of entrepreneurs to further develop and diversify their local economy. Applications are due July 1.

"Entrepreneurs can be the driving force in a local economy, especially ones that have been hit by large company closures and relocations. Entrepreneurs create jobs, invest in infrastructure and assist communities in competing in a regional, national and global economy."  - Kelly Manning, Colorado SBDC Network Director

The Certified Small Business Community Initiative is a Colorado SBDC Network offering that will assist rural communities who want to take their entrepreneurship to the next level.

What Communities Can Expect 
  • Featured on a dedicated SBDC website developed for certified Communities
  • Possible highway signage designed and installed with assistance from CDOT
  • Up to $10,000 in coaching, mentoring and technical assistance from the Colorado SBDC Network
  • Up to $30,000 in cash to assist with the completion of an action plan project (priority projects include - SBDC/Satellite office in community, co-working space in community, others on a case-by-case basis)
  • Designation of a "Certified Small Business Community" to promote a great place to "Work, Live and Play" in Colorado
Applicants can be a single town or city, several towns or communities working together or a county. Interested communities must demonstrate a defined sense of place or niche that sets them apart, have a concentration of entrepreneurship, a high level of community engagement and support of small businesses, and the ability to execute the plan.

Interested communities are encouraged to contact OEDIT. Questions about the program or application process should be directed to Christine Hoffman at (720) 391-8865 or christine.hoffman@state.co.us

Download program information here and access the application online here. Applications and all supporting documents must be submitted to OEDIT by July 1. The award decision will be made by August 1.

Ready, Set, Go 2017 Day at the DOT

Monday, April 17, 2017

Ready... Set... Go! 2017 Day at the DOT in Region 4

May 18th, 2017 | 8:30 - 11:45 am

Colorado Department of Transporation

Region 4 Headquarters 10601 West 10th Street Greeley, CO 80634

Join the Colorado Department of Transportation in its supplier open house in CDOT's Region 4 - Greeley/ Northeast Colorado. CDOT staff will be available to help suppliers register on the CDOT bid portal for goods and services and teach them how to navigate the system. Suppliers can meet onsite with CDOT program managers and buyers.

8:30 - 8:45 am Welcome & Open Remarks 

Colorado Department of Transportation, Minority Business Office of Colorado

8:45- 9:45 am Ready! "How CDOT Buys Goods and Services" 

Learn about cooperative agreements, small-dollar purchases, and competitive bidding opportunities.

10 - 10:45 am Set! "What CDOT Buys" 

Representatives from Region 4 discuss purchases within their region.

10:45- 11:45 Go! "Register to Bid with CDOT"

Register on CDOT's supplier self-service (SUSS) portal and learn how to navigate the portal.


COSBDC Network Receives National Accreditation

Monday, April 10, 2017

Denver (April 6, 2017) - The Colorado Small Business Development Center (COSBDC) Network is not only celebrating 30 years of supporting small businesses in Colorado, but has earned full accreditation from the Association of Small Business Development Centers, the national accrediting body for Small Business Development Centers under contract from the U.S. Small Business Administration.

The America's SBDC Accreditation Committee voted to fully accredit the COSBDC program with commendations and announced this at the America's SBDC semiannual meeting in Washington, D.C. in February.

"This seal of approval is the result of the skills and expertise of the network's staff and the impact of their work in helping small businesses grow and prosper," said COSBDC Network director Kelly Manning. "The entire Colorado team does a truly outstanding job supporting small businesses and making Colorado's economy the best in the nation."

The COSBDC also received accreditation in technology and is now a "T" designated state, one of only a handful in the country. This enables the COSBDC to focus on businesses with less than 25 employees on the use of technology and technology companies to commercialize, apply for SBIR/STTR grants and strategize on growth opportunities, to mention a few offerings.

"Colorado's tech scene is thriving and the State is becoming an innovation hub. We are in the top five US states for entrepreneurship and innovation with an influx of top tech talent as of late," said Manning. "Having a "T" designation only further allows us to support this growing community of start-ups based within the State."

Federal statute mandates that every five years, SBDC programs undergo a robust review to continue program eligibility and funding. This review process is based on the Baldridge Performance Excellence Program that ensures effectiveness and efficient program delivery.

Reaching full accreditation helps to eliminate inconsistencies between the nationwide network of 1,000 SBDC locations and over 4,000 SBDC business advisors, and creates a standard that defines excellence while providing an approach to achieving the highest performance. No other publicly-funded program undergoes the accountability examinations and reviews that SBDCs receive.

To learn more about the COSBDC and its no-cost, confidential consulting services go online to coloradosbdc.org or call the Small Business Navigator at 303-592-5920.

About the Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network

The Colorado Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network is dedicated to helping existing and new businesses grow and prosper in Colorado by providing free and confidential consulting and no-or low-cost training programs. The SBDC strives to be the premier, trusted choice of Colorado businesses for consulting, training and resources. The SBDC Network combines the resources of federal, state and local organizations with those of the educational system and private sector to meet the specialized and complex needs of the small business community. COSBDC is a division of the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT).

COSBDC is funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, the state of Colorado and local organizations that support our small business community. COSBDC is a member of America's SBDC, celebrating over 35 years of providing proven technical assistance to small businesses in 1000 centers nationwide.

America's SBDC, Square, and Quickbooks - Oh my!

Friday, March 17, 2017

Hey East Colorado SBDC members,

The New Year has arrived and any resolution list should include taking your business to the next level! And at the very top of that list should be getting paid faster and making sure your books are in tip-top shape.

QuickBooks, the #1 accounting solution in the US, and Square, a leading provider of payments processing and point-of-sale tools, have partnered to help. Through the Sync with Square product integration, Square sales data automatically flows into QuickBooks Online to minimize data entry and seamlessly track your business’ daily sales transactions.
 

Now for four months only, members of the ASBDC will receive an exclusive deal:


  •  40% off QuickBooks Online for 6 months*
  • $1000 off payments processing and a free magstripe reader from Square
Nowhere else can small business owners receive this bundled offer.
 
To take advantage of both offers, click on the link below and fill out the form. A QuickBooks team member will then contact you within 24hrs to get you up and running on QuickBooks Online and Square.

Fill out this form!


*After six months, subscribers will be charged regular price for QuickBooks Online.