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Using the Paycheck Protection Program to Upgrade Your IT

women at computer desk
Using the Paycheck Protection Program to Upgrade Your IT

Small businesses recently received good news – a new wave of funding for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is on its way.

Passed late last month, the $284 billion allocated for the second round of relief (PPP-2) will continue to help businesses keep their workforce employed during the COVID-19 pandemic and will also include a new eligible expense; allowing businesses to use up to 40% of their loan on IT upgrades.

What Types of IT Upgrades Are Covered?

Congress extended covered expenditures under PPP-2 to include “any business software or cloud computing service that facilitates business operations, product or service delivery, the processing, payment, or tracking of payroll expenses, human resources, sales and billing functions, or accounting or tracking of supplies, inventory, records and expenses.”

These could include any of the following:

Benefits of Upgrading IT for Remote Work

  1. Increase productivity
  2. Improve security
  3. Reduce expenses
  4. Encourage communications and collaboration

With a majority of the workforce turning to remote work at the start of the pandemic and likely onward, transitioning employees and their network can be a large expense, but a rewarding one.

By utilizing modern IT solutions, you can improve your company from the inside out. Upgrading to cloud-based applications can allow your employees easy access to files and documents securely from anywhere in the world. In addition, these files can be easily shared and reviewed collaboratively by both internal teams and clients. Cloud computing can also help reduce expenses, eliminating the need to continuously update and maintain hardware.

While communication is critical in the office, it’s even more so when your staff is working outside of the office. Your employees will have access to an array of team and client communication possibilities from phone calls, video meetings, chat and email.

With cloud and software updates now included in the loan’s approved expenses, it further proves the importance of providing an ideal network and reliable solutions for your employees. Vision Computer Solutions can ensure your business has the tools to do so.

PPP-2 Basic Guidelines

In order to apply for your PPP-2 loan and take advantage of the benefits of modernizing your IT department, first you’ll need to be sure you’re eligible to receive the loan and abide by all stipulations. If done carefully and correctly, your loan can be forgiven.

As mentioned, IT expenses can make up 40% of your loan spend. The rest must be allocated on employee payroll.

The PPP-2 loan can be granted to those who did not receive the first round of relief and is also open to businesses who have been significantly impacted by the pandemic in need of a second loan.

PPP-2 Criteria for first time applicants:

  • 500 employees or less
  • Prove your business was operational before Feb 15, 2020 and remains open

PPP-2 Criteria for second time applicants:

  • 300 employees or less
  • Must have exhausted all funds in your first loan
  • Prove you have lost 25% or more of your revenue in Q1 ,Q2, or Q3 2020
  • Prove your business was operational before Feb 15, 2020 and remains open

Loans will be available through March 31, 2021.