Business Intelligence Program (BIP) Guidelines
WHERE TO FIND:
Ontario Creates offers financial support to incorporated not-for-profit industry organizations undertaking business intelligence initiatives that support or complement the following elements of our mandate:
- contribute to the continued expansion of a business environment in Ontario that is advantageous to the growth of the cultural media industry and to the growth of new employment, investment and production opportunities in Ontario; and/or
- facilitate and support innovation, invention and excellence in Ontario’s cultural media industry by stimulating creative production, format innovation and new models of collaboration among sectors of the cultural media industry.
For purposes of the Ontario Creates Business Intelligence Program (BIP), “business intelligence” is defined as information and/or insights that industries and businesses require in order to increase their capacity and effectiveness, with a view to creating long-term stability and competitive market advantage. “Business intelligence” is primarily forward-looking, and includes the following (this list is not exhaustive):
- Interpretation of data and statistics
- Market intelligence
- Analysis required in order to prepare for challenges and take advantage of opportunities
- Insights that will allow companies to formulate strong strategies
The BIP will support projects aimed at gathering, formulating and disseminating business intelligence relevant to the growth of one or more content creating sectors in Ontario.
Ontario Creates values and supports diversity and gender parity at all levels and business roles within creative industries. We acknowledge that many communities continue to face systemic barriers, preventing them from participating meaningfully in these industries.
Ontario Creates applies a lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion to the evaluation criteria for this program. Applicants proposing projects/activities that support, reflect, and strengthen diversity and gender parity in Ontario are expected to tangibly demonstrate a genuine and sustained commitment to these equity-seeking communities.* Ontario Creates encourages applications from organizations that are led by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, or People of Colour) or Francophone individuals and applicants that otherwise meet the provincial definition of diversity.**
Ontario Creates is committed to fostering respectful workplaces in all sectors and companies we support. A respectful workplace is one that values diversity and inclusion, dignity, courteous conduct, fairness, positive communication and professional working relationships. A respectful workplace is free from harassment and discrimination including sexual harassment.
Ontario Creates expects that all funding recipients maintain the principles of a respectful workplace including taking every reasonable step to:
- Cultivate and sustain a respectful, positive, inclusive and supportive work culture
- Provide a safe mechanism for staff to report incidents or allegations of inappropriate behavior
- Take action to prevent, identify and eliminate workplace harassment and discrimination in a timely manner
An eligibility requirement for this program includes the applicant organization confirming that they have in place both guiding principles and a process for maintaining a respectful workplace. Please download the Applicant Affidavit from the Ontario Creates website or from the application form in the OAP, sign, and include with your application as instructed.
Ontario Creates welcomes applications from people with disabilities, people who are deaf, and people who have barriers to accessing technology. If you would like to request an alternative process or format for submitting an application, or request funds (up to $500 per application) towards service providers to assist with your application, please contact email@example.com a minimum of four weeks before the deadline. Support for application assistance is also available to First Nations, Inuit or Métis applicants facing language, geographic and/or cultural barriers. Services may include, but are not limited to, assistance to create an account and navigate the Online Application Portal; transcribe/edit/organize/translate applications materials; complete and submit application materials.
* Equity seeking communities are those that face significant collective challenges in participating in society. This marginalization may be caused by, but not limited to, attitudinal, historic, social and environmental barriers based on age, ethnicity, disability, economic status, gender, nationality, race, sexual orientation and transgender status. Equity-seeking communities identify barriers to equal access, opportunities and resources due to disadvantage and discrimination and actively seek social justice and reparation.
** The provincial definition of diversity states: the dimensions of diversity include, but are not limited to: ancestry, culture, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, language, physical and intellectual ability, race, religion (creed), sex, sexual orientation and socioeconomic status.
1. Program Deadlines 2024/25
Deadline 1: Tuesday, March 19, 2024 5:00 PM ET
Deadline 2: Tuesday, August 6, 2024 5:00 PM ET
NOTE: Please read the complete guidelines thoroughly before starting your application. Applications must be submitted via the Online Application Portal (OAP) (for instructions on the OAP, please review the section entitled “Application Process” set out in these Guidelines). If you are unsure of your organization or project eligibility after reviewing the “Applicant Eligibility” and “Project Eligibility” sections below, please contact us in advance of a deadline to discuss.
2. Applicant Eligibility
Applicants must be incorporated not-for-profit Ontario organizations or incorporated not-for-profit national organizations offering significant benefit to the Ontario creative industries (book, film, interactive digital media, magazine, music or television industries). In order to ensure that the projects funded best meet the needs of the industries, preference will be given to creative industry trade organizations.
Applicants are welcome to partner or collaborate with other organizations (whether eligible or ineligible as applicants) if doing so would further the goals of the project. If the application is successful, Ontario Creates will contract with a single lead applicant which must be an eligible organization.
Applicants proposing projects/activities that support, reflect, and strengthen diversity and gender parity in Ontario are expected to tangibly demonstrate a genuine and sustained commitment to these equity-seeking communities.*** Organizations without a specific mandate to support equity-seeking communities will be expected to demonstrate how their business intelligence project reflects their ongoing commitment to equity-seeking communities through meaningful consultation and project participation.
Colleges and universities are not eligible to apply directly to the BIP program but may be partners in a project.
*** Equity seeking communities are those that face significant collective challenges in participating in society. This marginalization may be caused by, but not limited to, attitudinal, historic, social and environmental barriers based on age, ethnicity, disability, economic status, gender, nationality, race, sexual orientation and transgender status. Equity-seeking communities identify barriers to equal access, opportunities and resources due to disadvantage and discrimination and actively seek social justice and reparation.
3. Project Eligibility
Projects proposed should achieve one or more of the following goals in the creative industries:
- provide information needed by an industry to further industry development or growth (e.g., regarding markets, consumer information, business models, product trend information, etc.)
- provide analysis or interpretation of existing data and statistics
- offer intelligence regarding a consumer base, segment or geographic market
- provide insight, analysis or strategic direction aimed at helping content creating companies counter challenges and pursue opportunities
- be of benefit to content creating companies in one or more creative industry sectors.
Projects must address an existing information gap or gaps.
The following types of projects are not eligible for Ontario Creates BIP funding:
- Strategic planning for an organization
- Feasibility studies
Applicants should note that this is a competitive application process and submitting an application does not guarantee that your project will be funded. For more information, please visit the Research Funded by Ontario Creates page on our website to view recently-funded projects.
4. Application Process
- Interested applicants must submit their application to Ontario Creates by 5:00 pm on deadline day. Upcoming deadlines are listed above and on the Ontario Creates website.
- All applications must be submitted electronically through the Ontario Creates Online Application Portal (OAP) at https://apply.ontariocreates.ca/.
- If you do not have a user account on the Ontario Creates OAP, please go to https://apply.ontariocreates.ca/ and click on “Register”. For assistance, please see Ontario Creates’ website for a “How to Get Started” guide to the OAP. To start the application, click on “Start new application” and follow the directions through the five step wizard to access the application form.
- For technical assistance, please contact the OAP Helpdesk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Applicants are strongly encouraged to begin the application process early to allow ample time to compile the necessary information and complete the application. You may start an application at any time and save changes to it up until the time you submit.
- Organizations planning to apply for the BIP should contact the Ontario Creates Research Department to determine the eligibility of the organization and the project. Ontario Creates is pleased to provide input on applications, however, we are unable to review material submitted less than seven days before the deadline.
- Applications must be received before the scheduled project commencement date.
5. Decision Criteria
Applicants should note that this is a competitive application process and submitting an application does not guarantee that your project will be funded.
In the 2024-25 fiscal year Ontario Creates will prioritize eligible Business Intelligence Program applications that align with the goals and directions outlined in the agency’s current strategic plan.
Ontario Creates applies a lens of diversity, equity, and inclusion to the evaluation criteria for this program. Applicants proposing projects/activities that support, reflect, and strengthen diversity and gender parity in Ontario are expected to tangibly demonstrate a genuine and sustained commitment to these equity-seeking communities.**** Ontario Creates encourages applications from organizations that are led by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, or People of Colour) or Francophone individuals and applicants that otherwise meet the provincial definition of diversity.*****
The agency’s decision to participate will be based on the following criteria:
Applications with a score of less than 20% in this category will be considered to have failed to meet the Project Eligibility Requirements.
Quality of Project Plan
Project Costs and Financing
|Applicant and Project Team Capacity
|Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging
Ontario Creates may request clarification of the budget or application during the application process. Before contracting, Ontario Creates may request modifications to project design in order to enhance value or address gaps.
Ontario Creates will confirm its participation in a project within eight weeks of the application deadline. Once Ontario Creates has confirmed participation, applicants will be expected to finalize project funding and sign an agreement with Ontario Creates within 60 days.
**** Equity seeking communities are those that face significant collective challenges in participating in society. This marginalization may be caused by, but not limited to, attitudinal, historic, social and environmental barriers based on age, ethnicity, disability, economic status, gender, nationality, race, sexual orientation and transgender status. Equity-seeking communities identify barriers to equal access, opportunities and resources due to disadvantage and discrimination and actively seek social justice and reparation.
***** The provincial definition of diversity states: the dimensions of diversity include, but are not limited to: ancestry, culture, ethnicity, gender identity, gender expression, language, physical and intellectual ability, race, religion (creed), sex, sexual orientation and socioeconomic status.
The value of our financial contribution for selected projects will be determined by the type of project, the size and scope of the project plan and the relevance of the proposed project to the program objectives and to the industry. Our contribution may not exceed 75% of the project budget.
- Ontario Creates funding is contingent upon proof of full financing for the project being provided prior to contracting.
- Payments will be tied to receipt and acceptance of the following:
- A fully executed Agreement (40%)
- An Interim Status Report (10%)
- A Draft Report (30%)
- A Final Report (in the format stated in the Agreement) and a Final Project Cost Report. (20%)
- Ontario Creates funding will be limited to a percentage of the project’s total budget (to a maximum of 75%). Applicants are expected to contribute to the financing of the project, whether in cash or in-kind, and are expected to seek other sources of financing where appropriate.
- Administration costs for the project may not exceed 15% of the total budget. Administration costs include but are not limited to the cost of utilities, payroll costs, couriers, photocopying, office staff salaries, office supplies and rental of office space. The definition of an administrative cost is, within reason, at the discretion of Ontario Creates.
- Applicants are not required to secure the services of a consultant or consulting firm, though these are eligible costs for this program. We encourage all applicants to consider and utilize the expertise best suited to their needs.
Ontario Creates funds are to be used only for the purposes of carrying out the proposed project. Where consultants are engaged to undertake the work, Ontario Creates funds may not be used to cover travel, hospitality or other personal expenses incurred by consultants for the project.
7. Reporting Requirements
Organizations receiving funding will be required to provide Ontario Creates with status and other reports throughout the life of the project. These reports may include (but are not limited to):
- A file copy of any agreements signed with any consultants retained for the Project.
- An Interim Status Report.
- A Draft Report.
- A Final Report (in the format stated in the Agreement).
- A Final Cost Report for the Project.
8. Other Requirements
- Projects must have a minimum budget of $30,000. As noted under “Funding,” above, the request to Ontario Creates may not exceed 75% of project costs. Projects where our investment represents 50% or less of the total project budget will be prioritized.
- The use of AI technology must be disclosed and outlined in your application. This applies to (1) the use of AI to prepare content for the application form and supporting documents and (2) submitted projects that involve the use of AI technology in the creation of content or otherwise. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all applications and projects have access to all underlying rights including content that is created with the assistance of AI technology.
- Successful applicants will be required to provide Ontario Creates with a copy of an Insurance Certificate demonstrating that they have commercial general liability insurance for not less than $2 million dollars with an insurer having a secure A.M. Best rating of B + or greater (or the equivalent). The policy will need to include the following clauses:
- Ontario Media Development Corporation* and His Majesty the King must be named as additional insureds with respect to liability arising in the course of performance of the Recipient’s obligations under, or otherwise in connection with, the Agreement;
- cross-liability clause;
- contractual liability coverage; and
- thirty (30) day written notice of cancellation, termination or material change.
- The Insurance Certificate will need to be provided prior to the execution of the funding agreement with Ontario Creates. Failure to do so could result in our funding offer being rescinded.
- Prior to entering into an agreement with Ontario Creates, organizations will be required to provide proof of incorporation as a not-for-profit entity.
* Ontario Media Development Corporation is Ontario Creates’ legal name.
Please note that:
- The final report will be public, and is required to be made available in an accessible format.
- We will have the right to post the completed study on the Ontario Creates website (ontariocreates.ca) and Online Research Library (researchlibrary.ontariocreates.ca) and to distribute the completed report at our discretion.
- Ontario Creates will have the right to review and comment on all materials before they are finalized as well as ensure the final report meets all contractual obligations before it is finalized and released.
- Successful applicants will be required to enter into a signed agreement with Ontario Creates prior to receiving any funding. (A copy of the Template Agreement can be found here).
- Accessibility: As noted above, applicants are expected to make the final report available to the public in an accessible format. This requirement extends to any communications or marketing materials produced to support the report. Ontario Creates encourages applicants who host event-based activities to choose accessible venues and offer accommodations for people with disabilities as required. More information on the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act can be found here https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/05a11.
9. More Information
Ontario Creates Business Affairs and Research Department
An agency of the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, Ontario Creates facilitates economic development opportunities for Ontario’s cultural media industries including book and magazine publishing, film and television, music and interactive digital media industries.