Grant Application: Small Software Businesses

Request for Proposal (RFP) Application

Grant Opportunity: Small Business Innovation Grant for Software Companies
Funding Available: $73,720
Issued By: Neighborhood Development Center
Date of Issue: 4/1/24
Submission Deadline: 4/30/2

I. Introduction

Neighborhood Development Center (NDC) is pleased to announce the availability of grant funding for software companies under NDC’s Small Business Innovation Grant program. We invite eligible software companies to submit proposals that focus on improving employee engagement and workplace culture while reducing turnover. This Request for Proposal (RFP) outlines the application process and evaluation criteria. Number of grants and grant amounts will be determined by strength of RFP and demonstrated need.

II. Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for this grant opportunity, businesses must meet the following criteria:

  • Provides a product that addresses employee engagement and workplace culture.
  • Have less than $1MM in annual revenue.
  • Be registered and in good standing with the State of Minnesota.
  • Demonstrate a strong commitment to their customers and the local community.
  • Present a clear and comprehensive plan detailing how the funds will be utilized.
  • Business is located in an Opportunity Zone.

III. Grant Details

Total Grant Funding Available: $73,720.

Purpose: The grant is intended to support software companies that are dedicated to creating innovative solutions to enhance employee engagement, improve workplace culture, and reduce turnover.

Grant Period: The grant period will cover one year from the date of award.

Eligible Uses of Grant:

  • Research and development (which includes but is not limited to, proof of concept activities, intellectual property development and protection, market feasibility studies, commercialization planning, prototype design and development, start‐up costs)
  • Direct business expenses (e.g., rent, equipment purchases, supplier invoices, wages of employees but not salaries or wages of 20% or more business owners or their family members, etc.)
  • Purchase of technical assistance and services from an institution of higher education and other organization

IV. Application Requirements

Interested organizations are requested to submit the following documents:

  1. Cover Letter: A brief cover letter introducing your organization and summarizing the purpose of the proposed project.
  2. Proposal Narrative: A detailed proposal that includes the following:
  3. Project Description: Clearly outline the project’s objectives, methodology, and expected outcomes.
  4. Implementation Plan: Describe how you intend to execute the project, including a timeline and milestones.
  5. Budget: Provide a detailed budget for the proposed project, specifying how the grant funds will be allocated.
  6. Evaluation Plan: Explain how you will measure the project’s success and impact.
  7. Organizational Background: Provide information about your organization, its mission, and past experience relevant to the proposed project.
  8. Letters of Support: If applicable, include letters of support from partners, stakeholders, or clients endorsing your project.
  9. References: Provide contact information for at least three references who can speak to your organization’s capabilities and previous work.

V. Evaluation Criteria

Proposals will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

Relevance: The alignment of the proposal with the grant’s purpose and objectives to support software companies that are dedicated to creating innovative solutions to enhance employee engagement, improve workplace culture, and reduce turnover.

Feasibility: The practicality and likelihood of successful project implementation.

Budget: The reasonableness and appropriateness of the proposed budget.

Organizational Capacity: The organization’s ability to carry out the proposed project.

VI. Performance and Reporting

Performance Period:

  • The Innovation Grant program is an 12-month performance period.

Reporting Requirements for Grantee:

  • How many new jobs did this grant enable you to create? Please provide the numbers in FTE, including both W-2 and 1099 contractors.
  • If you have been able to secure additional private investment during the performance period, how much have you raised?
  • If you are in a revenue producing stage, what has been your gross sales revenue during the performance period?

VII. Submission Information

All applications must be submitted electronically in PDF format to [email protected]. Please use the subject line “Small Business Competitive Grant Application – [Your Business Name].”

VIII. Contact Information

For questions or additional information, please contact:

Elisa Pluhar
[email protected]

IX. Important Dates

RFP Issued: 4/1/2024
Application Deadline: 4/30/2024
Award Notification: 5/20/2024

We look forward to receiving your innovative proposals and partnering with you to create software solutions that positively impact employee engagement, workplace culture, and turnover reduction.