CRM software grants for SMEs and charities – advice and useful links

desktop monitor shoing CRM software and piggy bank against blue background with text 'Find grants for your CRM project'

A digital world

At a time when businesses across the country are ramping up digital investment, CRM software is at the top of the list on many businesses’ Capex sheets. With CRM playing such a pivotal role in competitiveness and digital communications, it is no longer a ‘nice to have’, but an essential tool for growth and success. The sheer volume of CRM solutions and providers within the industry currently demonstrates the hunger and pace of this demand. This in itself can leave business leaders and owners scratching their heads and wondering where to start, but that’s a whole other topic! Click here to read this handy article on what to consider when selecting a CRM. 

And despite businesses knowing that this is a smart investment, one of the biggest barriers remains finance.  

Price points for CRM solutions can vary wildly, yet the investment is still a bit hard to swallow, for any start-up, charity or SME. Thankfully, there are numerous Government and private funding streams available to support organisations with their tech investment to help them level up their digital capabilities. Some would argue that the pandemic has been a major catalyst to this serious focus on levelling up digital capabilities and it is within the nation’s best interest to support a thriving and growing economy.  

What CRM tech funding is available?

To save you time, we’ve researched what’s available in the UK in terms of CRM software grants and guidance for smaller businesses and not-for-profits. Here are the best sites to check out if you’re looking for funding for your CRM software project.  

Please note at the time of publishing, we have no affiliation with any of the below-suggested sources of CRM software grants and advice.

The LEP network  

The LEP (Local Enterprise Partnerships) network and local Growth Hubs are delivering crucial business support to businesses across the UK.  

Who is it for?   

All UK based businesses can access this advice and funding hub. The network includes 38 Growth Hubs which are local public/private sector partnerships led by the Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs). Providing a practical central point of information as they join up national and local business support.  

Good to know  

Navigating to your local hub is made simple thanks to these mapped out links.  

There’s also a business support helpline open 9 am to 6 pm Monday to Friday.  

https://www.lepnetwork.net/local-growth-hub-contacts/

National Lottery Community Fund 

What is it? Lottery funding for projects that support people and communities across the UK. Distributing over £600m a year to communities across the UK, raised by players of The National Lottery.  

The National Lottery Community Fund finances many different activities through a variety of funding programmes, this could include software required to fund specific community projects.   

Who is it for?   

Voluntary and community groups based in the UK looking to make improvements to local communities or wider society. These include:  

  • Voluntary or community organisations  
  • Registered charities  
  • Constituted groups or clubs  
  • Not-for-profit companies or community interest companies  
  • Statutory bodies (including town, parish and community councils).  

What are the criteria?   

Groups can apply to us for funding under £10,000, or over £10,000, depending on what they want to do.   

The criteria are broad and the information available on their website is limited, so we advise contacting the National Lottery Community Fund for further information.   

Good to know

The National Lottery Community Fund only funds groups or organisations to run projects and doesn’t fund individuals.   

If you are a voluntary or community group (not an incorporated organisation) wanting to apply for our funding, you need to have a written constitution (or governing document) which sets out rules on how your organisation is run – this is known as being ‘constituted’.  

Website: https://www.tnlcommunityfund.org.uk/funding/thinking-of-applying-for-funding/projects-we-fund  

Gov.UK Finance and support list  

A comprehensive list of regional and local funding is available through the UK Government in addition to the national Help to Grow Digital scheme. There are around 68 sources of grant funding from across the UK.  

Who is it for?   

UK registered businesses of all sizes and locations.  

What are the criteria?   

Various criteria depend on the funding source.  

Good to know  

You can filter by business size, location, and industry to make your funding search easier.  

There are 53 funding sources specifically for startups and 60 for established businesses.  

Use the search bar to find tech, software and CRM related grants.  

Website: https://www.gov.uk/business-finance-support  

Government Help to Grow Digital scheme  

What is it?   

Help to Grow Digital is a Government scheme aimed at helping businesses use the latest digital technology to cut costs, save time, reach new customers and be more competitive. The scheme also offers guidance on how to choose and use digital software to grow a business.  

Businesses can access a discount of up to 50% on the costs of buying approved software, worth up to £5,000.  

Who is it for?  

UK based SMEs with between 5 and 249 employees.   

What are the criteria?  

  • Your business must have a registered office in the UK (England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland) and be registered at the relevant Companies House or be a registered society listed on the Financial Conduct Authority’s Mutuals Register.  
  • Your business must have been actively trading for over 12 months prior to the date of application and have an incorporation date of, at minimum, 365 days prior to the date of application.   
  • Your business must have a total of between 5 and 249 employees.   
  • Your business must be purchasing the approved software for the first time.  

Source: https://www.learn-to-grow-your-business.service.gov.uk/about  

Good to know  

 You can only apply for one discount per eligible business.  

The Help to Grow Digital discount cannot be split across more than one software.  

Funding is only available for solutions offered through this Help to Grow Digital scheme. Currently, Dynamics 365 suppliers are not part of the scheme.  

Website: https://www.learn-to-grow-your-business.service.gov.uk/  

We hope this shortlist offers a great starting point for sourcing CRM software grants which will kick-start your digital transformation project. 

Remember any CRM software investment must be carried out thoroughly and with caution, as selecting a solution that is a poor fit for your company can mean money and time wasted. For impartial CRM advice, contact us for a no-obligation 30-minute consultation. We are by no means funding experts and can’t advise on processing grants and funding applications, but will happily share our CRM knowledge to help you make an informed decision.  

Click here to book a consultation with one of our team:  

About Rocket CRM

Rocket CRM is a Microsoft Dynamics 365 and a platinum ClickDimensions accredited partner, helping small to medium-sized businesses and charities harness the power of scalable CRM technology. Our mission is to make powerful CRM software simple with custom-built, user-focused solutions.  

About Natalie Silva

Natalie has over 13 years of digital marketing experience, spanning a variety of sectors and business types, from start-ups to established SMEs, and even European Plcs. Pragmatic, creative and goal orientated, Natalie enjoys exploring new ways to expand Rocket CRM's reach.