Resources: Getting Started — Links

Links
The following links provide a baseline of key resources.

Canada Business Network is a government information service for businesses and start-up entrepreneurs in Canada. Canada Business reduces the complexity and burden of dealing with various levels of government by serving as a single point of access for federal and provincial/territorial government services, programs and regulatory requirements for business. http://www.canadabusiness.ca/eng/

The Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) provides a resource section on its industry website. Sections include Industry Update, Research and Statistics, Media Centre, CTC News, Markets, Brand toolkit for partners, Publications and Image Gallery. http://en-corporate.canada.travel/resources-industry

Align with the Canada  brand refer to the Brand Canada Toolkit for more information on place branding for tourism. The CTC has developed the “Experiences ToolKit” a tool for businesses and communities to understand target markets. The CTC provides various national reports by market and sector, which can be found at http://en-corporate.canada.travel/research.

Overseas consumer market research, led by the Canadian Tourism Commission, is an ongoing initiative of several Canadian tourism-related associations including Tourism British Columbia. Consumer market research examines the characteristics, motivations and planning habits of the long-haul pleasure travellers of an international market through interviews with that market segment. The research also examines the awareness of Canada, potential of the market, and Canada’s competitive analysis as a destination. Resources for media can be found at: http://mediacentre.canada.travel/.

The Community Futures Network was established in 1986 by the federal government in response to the severe economic and labour market changes faced by rural Canadian communities. Over the last 20 years Community Futures in BC has played a significant role in entrepreneurial and community development. Comprised of 34 locally and strategically positioned organizations, the BC Community Futures Network has a significant impact on the socio-economic development and diversification of the rural communities it serves. Community Futures works with the existing business community to increase its capacity, to assist with entrepreneurial potential and develop a diversified and self-reliant economy. Programs include business loans, business planning, economic development, workshops and special projects, which can include tourism development capacity building. http://www.communityfutures.ca/

Front Counter BC is a single-window service for clients of provincial natural resource ministries and agencies. Staff members guide clients through all regulated natural resource issues. Business clients can think of the staff at the counter as their direct link to BC’s natural resource ministries and agencies. Staff are specifically trained and knowledgeable in authorizations required by natural resource businesses and clients for mining, forestry, agriculture, health, etc. Front Counter BC staff act as advocates for timely decisions and responses, and help a client navigate — from start to finish — what can sometimes be a maze of licences, permits and registrations. In the past, clients of BC natural resource ministries and agencies often had to go from agency to agency to obtain their necessary authorizations. The Front Counter BC centres simplify the process for small to medium-sized natural resource businesses. http://www.frontcounterbc.gov.bc.ca/

The Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training supports the tourism industry through policy, planning and funding. Destination BC provides various programs and services to assist businesses and communities throughout British Columbia.

Tourism Strategy and Policy

On October 25, 2011, Premier Christy Clark introduced the Gaining the Edge tourism strategy as part of Canada Starts Here: The BC Jobs Plan. This five-year plan maps out key areas of focus that will help tourism fulfill its true potential, stimulating sector growth with increasing visitation, revenue and employment. http://www.jtst.gov.bc.ca/tourismstrategy/

Tourism Industry Programs

As part of the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training Destinations BC’s mandate is to support and promote the business of tourism throughout the province. As a destination marketing organization, Destination BC is structured to develop and deliver programs and services that attract visitors to BC and help ensure that the quality of their vacation experience keeps them coming back for more. Destination BC has a number of resources and opportunities available to assist tourism industry operators in growing and developing their businesses. http://www.destinationbc.ca/Programs.aspx

Tourism Industry Resources

Destination BC is structured to develop and deliver programs and services that attract visitors to British Columbia and help ensure that the quality of their vacation experience keeps them coming back for more. Destination BC has a number of resources available to assist tourism operators, communities and sectors in growing and developing their businesses. Get started by viewing the “Tourism Checklist” and exploring the collection of tools and links. http://www.destinationbc.ca/Resources.aspx

Tourism Research

Destinations BC’s Research, Planning and Evaluation team conducts research on various aspects of the tourism industry, providing industry partners with information to enhance the effectiveness of future marketing and development projects. The information provided in the Research section will be updated on a regular basis and should prove helpful in examining tourism patterns. http://www.destinationbc.ca/Research.aspx

The Province of BC conducted a series of Tourism Opportunity Studies (TOS), which is an information tool that can be used to identify, develop and promote appropriate, sustainable tourism development opportunities for a region. The studies are useful tools for business people, governments and local communities. Market and community profile information is included in the studies.

Northern Development Initiative Trust provides an excellent resource for Community Funding. Northern Development offers funding to municipalities, regional districts, First Nations, not-for-profit organizations and public authorities to support sustainable economic development and diversification throughout central and northern British Columbia. http://northerndevelopment.bc.ca/community-funding.

The Rural BC website provides easy reference to resources and program funding information designed to assist communities and regions. http://www.ruralbc.gov.bc.ca/

Small Business BC is a public and private sector collaboration, is the comprehensive Business Development Resource for people exploring opportunities, launching new ventures and growing existing businesses. http://www.smallbusinessbc.ca/

Small Business Resources

Small Business BC Resources include books, seminars and events, employment resources, templates and checklists.