Blogs

  • 05 Jun 2020 by DigiBC


    DigiBC recognizes that our members are having an array of business challenges during this crisis, ranging from a few issues to very significant business threats. As your trade association, we are working to ensure our industry, as diverse as it is, comes out of this in the most positive way possible. Our weekly updates will have pertinent information on government policies, industry responses, and tips on getting through this challenging time. Please feel free to contact us
    if there is something you think should be included or if there's an issue that your business would like help with. We are here for you!
    Please note, the info from each of our weekly updates gets consolidated into our COVID-19 Member Resources.


    Week of June 5, 2020

    Government Announcements / Policies / Funding

     

    • Startups Among Companies to Benefit From New $961.4-million Fund - June 2
      Canada’s six regional development agencies will focus $961.4 million in federal relief funding on companies and industry sectors critical to the economy in each region. The funding is aimed at small and medium-sized enterprises that have been unable to access the government’s existing support measures.

    • BC Strengthens Federal Commercial Rent (CECRA) Program - June 1
      BC businesses eligible for rent support from the federal government will be protected from evictions as the BC government issues a new order under the Emergency Program Act (EPA).

    • Innovate BC's Tech Co-op Grant Program
      Tech companies of up to 500 employees are eligible to receive wage subsidies to hire a B.C. co-op student. Each employer is eligible to receive a maximum of four grants per program year valued at up to $5,000 each.

    • Facebook Small Business Grants Program
      Facebook Canada has launched a new program to support businesses with nearly $3.5 million in grants and credits available for small to medium-size businesses across Canada. Application deadline has been extended to June 7.

       

    Industry-Related News

     

     


    Signal Boosting / #GiveBack / How Can I Help?

    We at DigiBC are incredibly moved by the generosity we’ve witnessed as we all struggle to try to make sense of terrible racial injustice in the US and around the world. We read that Asian Canadians have been targets of racial violence in our own towns and it feels like we have lost our way. As Mr. Roger’s mom once told him, "In the darkest times, look for the helpers. There are always helpers." Thank you to all those who are doing the work against racism, whether personal or political, and to those who put their time or treasure into this profoundly important work. Together we can, and will, make a difference in the fight against racism. ~ Brenda Bailey, Executive Director, DigiBC
     

    • Klei Entertainment felt it was important to help out where they can during this moment in US history and have donated $1 million USD toward helping fight for equality, civil rights, and racial justice. Funds will be going to ACLU and NAACP.
       
    • Electronic Arts is contributing $1 million to organizations dedicated to the fight for racial justice in the US and against discrimination around the world. Beginning with the Equal Justice Initiative, the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, and with more partners to come. Additionally, they will double any employee donations made to these organizations via its YourCause program throughout the month of June.
       
    • GamesIndustry.biz has put together a comprehensive list of organizations and initiatives supporting racial equity in the global games industry. From funding and training to online communities and advocacy groups, there is a growing number of resources encouraging racial diversity in the game industry.

     

     Companies Currently Hiring
     

     

     

    Upcoming Virtual Events of Interest

     

    CanExport SMEs   ***Now Adapted for Virtual Conferences***
    Apply online for up to $75,000 in CanExport SMEs funding to cover up to 75% of your international market development activities. Canadian small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) may choose up to (5) export markets to target, where your company has no or minimal business.

     

     

  • 12 Mar 2020 by DigiBC


    In light of the ongoing situation with the COVID-19 virus, a number of our member studios are creating protocols and procedures to navigate these previously uncharted waters.
    To support our sector and in the spirit of collaboration, DigiBC has taken best practices from our members and compiled the following list for you to consider utilizing as we face an increasingly unpredictable business environment throughout the creative sector in BC. The lens applied to the following guidelines and resources is one of precaution, but not alarmist. Thank you to our member studios for contributing information to this list.


    Key Priorities

    • Ensure your team members and their family members are safe and cared for
    • Ensure you can continue studio operations as best as possible
    • Ensure your staff are tech-enabled to work at home for an extended period
    • Provide ongoing communication to employees in response to information provided by health officials as the situation progresses


    COVID-19 Information


    Working From Home Guidelines

    Communicate clearly to employees whether they need to come into the office, have the option to work from home, or are required to work from home under certain circumstances. For example, some studios are having anyone with a sniffle to work from home and others have not yet taken this step. Think through the implications of these decisions and be clear with your team as circumstances change.

    In preparation for work from home:

    • Let everyone know that the company will be preparing to Work From Home (WFH)
    • Have employees check their VPN connection (how many can they handle) and fill out a spreadsheet on their WFH status asking:
      • I can access source control remotely
      • I can run the programs I need to work
      • I have the necessary hardware (Cintiqs, a good computer, enough hard disk space, etc)
      • I have a webcam, mic, headphones
      • Any additional notes
    • Install virtual desktop software and collaboration software (Zoom, Slack, etc)
    • Create a policy to reimburse employees for internet expenses if data caps are exceeded
    • Create a sign-out policy for employees to be able to take home the necessary equipment, cables, controllers, etc
    • Create a tracking doc for any equipment and computers taken off-site
    • Create a WFH policy and guidelines to help structure workdays for staff
    • Take a couple days to prepare for everyone to WFH (help get up home stations setup, troubleshoot remote login, etc)
    •  Run a "dry run" day where everyone who can work from home does so. People who don't yet have hardware can come into the office. On the day of the dry run, tally what hardware is still needed, talk to people who need to come in and coordinate delivering hardware to them.
       

    Day-to-Day Office Guidelines

    • Advise against any non-critical business travel
    • Post reminders in the office about good hygiene practices (bathrooms, elevators, lunchroom, common areas, etc)
    • Place hand sanitizer stations around the office
    • Take advantage of video-conference, Hangouts, etc even when in the same office
    • Advise staff of any revisions to your company sick/time off policy
    • Find out if any staff will be traveling for personal reasons to high risk countries

    **Spring Break Travel**
    Have any staff who are traveling out-of-country, will be in an airport, or having visitors who have been out-of-country or in an airport, to work from home for two weeks prior to returning to the workplace


    Hygiene Tips

    • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth
    • Cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing and then wash hands immediately
    • Do not attend events if you feel sick or have returned from an affected area
    • Consider no longer shaking hands and instead use another form of greeting (fist bump, elbow bump or our favourite, the Spock Vulcan greeting with LL&P)


    Guides


    DigiBC Events Update

    • We have currently put plans on hold for any events in the immediate future

     

  • 09 Mar 2020 by DigiBC

    We're excited to partner with Innovate BC for the fifth annual #BCTECHSummit. This is the largest annual tech conference in Western Canada returns to the Vancouver Convention Centre on June 1 & 2, 2020. The event will bring together local and international business leaders to share tactical expertise with B.C.’s most promising technology companies, innovators entrepreneurs. Thousands of attendees will gather again to learn from some of the foremost scale-up experts in a new format, which includes thought-leading keynotes, deep-dive breakout sessions and interactive workshops, in addition to a job fair, marketplace, pitch competition and investor meetings.
     

    Click below to purchase a pass and use the code GROW to receive $100 off the current ticket price!
     

    Tickets & Registration