Funding to help develop business skills

ARARAT - Ararat's regional businesses will have the opportunity to gain or renew core business skills as part of a new initiative of the Ararat Rural City Council's Business Development Unit, a result of a successful StreetLife: Raising the Standards grant, funded by the Victorian State Government.

The program will bring specialists from across the state to Ararat to deliver 14 training sessions on subjects identified as being of the most need from a recent survey of Ararat businesses, highest ranked being the use and understanding of emerging technology and social media.

Liberal Member for Western Victoria, Simon Ramsay, announced the $8,290 boost for Ararat retailers.

"Like all of the 36 round two Streetlife projects across Victoria, the Raising the Standards project will help develop core skills in retail management, foster innovative business practices and strengthen the business and traders' associations that underpin Victoria's small business community," Mr Ramsay said

Mayor Paul Hooper welcomed the funding.

"It's a great opportunity for local businesses to maintain their competitiveness in the digital age," he said.

Cr Hooper encouraged all businesses to take advantage of the free training being offered.

The program will be of no cost to businesses, and over the next few months will offer training on subjects like social media marketing, effective web pages, strategic planning, integrated marketing and Microsoft Office. The sessions will run both daytime and night-time to better cater for people's availability, and are being organised by Ararat Council's business development officer, John Watson, who can be contacted for further information on 5355 0250 or jwatson@ararat.vic.gov.au

Streetlife funds are invested into new projects, designed to assist retailers to develop their core business and stimulate long-term growth within the sector.

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