- Business Counseling & Financial Assistance
- Employees & Employers
- Farmers & Manufacturers
- Small Business
- Women & Minority-Owned
|Organization & Contact Information||Services|
|Franklin County Community Development|
|Valley Community Development Corporation||- Business counseling|
|ACCION||- Micro to small business assistance|
|Massachusetts Small Business Development Center||- Business counseling|
|Small Business Administration||- Business counseling & business plan assistance|
|Common Capital||- Business counseling|
|SCORE - Western Massachusetts||- Business counseling|
|Massachusetts Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC)|
1 Federal St., Building 101, Springfield, MA 01105
|- Education for federal, state and local government contracts|
- Guidance on drafting proposals, contract performance standards
- Free and confidential
The Kittredge Center for Business and Workforce Development
The Kittredge Center for Business and Workforce Development is a resource for workforce training, professional development providing affordable, customized programming to assist businesses and individuals in achieving their goals. You can contact GCC by emailing email@example.com..
Greenfield Community College
Greenfield Community College offers a very broad curriculum of degree, non-degree and professional development courses including the fields of health care, nursing, emergency medical services, accounting, criminal justice, computer information systems
The Literacy Project
The Literacy Project provides free basic education and high school equivalency classes to adults at 5 locations in Western Massachusetts and online. The Literacy Project will work with any adult who is seeking to improve skills, become qualified to find employment or work towards a GED or a college degree.
Center for New Americans
The Center for New Americans is a community based, non-profit adult education center that provides the under-served immigrant, refugee and migrant communities of the Western Massachusetts Pioneer Valley with education and resources to learn English, become involved community members and obtain the skills necessary to maintain economic independence and stability.
International Language Institute of Massachusetts
The International Language Institute (ILI) offers a broad curriculum of teaching English and foreign languages to students interested in speaking or teaching these languages. The ILI also offers a University Pathways program that transitions students attending ILI with selected colleges and universities.
MassHire Franklin Hampshire Career Center (FHCC)
MassHire Franklin Hampshire Career Center provides employment and training services at no charge to businesses and job seekers in Franklin and Hampshire counties and in the North Quabbin area of Massachusetts.
Employee/Job Seeker Resources
- MassHire COVID-19 Job Seeker Services
- MassHire Job Search Resources
- The BIZ Team assists employers with job posting, recruitment, labor market information, hiring incentives, and employee training. Learn more by calling 413-774-4361 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org..
- Resources Guide for Businesses (PDF)
- Career Counselors assist job seekers with job search, skill building, workshops, and job training. The full-service Career Center in Greenfield has a resource room with computers, phones, copy, and fax machines available for public use to assist with job search activities. Learn more by calling 413-774-4361 or visiting the MassHire FHCC website.
Massachusetts Center for Employee Ownership
If you are considering converting your business to employee ownership, Massachusetts Center for Employee Ownership (MassCEO) can help! MassCEO is administered by the ICA Group in partnership with Working Wealth with funding from the Commonwealth. MassCEO provides business owners with free support for succession planning.
Additional Employer Resources
Layoff Aversion and Management
If your workplace is laying off workers, temporarily closing or downsizing due to COVID-19, assistance can be provided to you and your employees. For more information, please contact MassHire Department of Career Services (MDCS) Rapid Response Unit at (617) 626-5300 or by visiting the website.
Associated Industries of Massachusetts
Established in 1915, Associated Industries of Massachusetts (AIM) is the largest nonprofit, nonpartisan association of Massachusetts employers. AIM’s mission is to promote the well-being of its members and their employees and the prosperity of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts by improving the economic climate of Massachusetts; proactively advocating fair and equitable public policy; and providing relevant, reliable information and excellent services
Western Massachusetts Office
1441 Main Street
Springfield, MA 01103
Phone: (413) 233-9850
Business West Resource Guidebook
The Business West Resource Guidebook is an annual publication which provides information on myriad businesses, nonprofits, and regional institutions. You are urged to make full use of the information in the guide to both grow your company and grasp the breadth and depth of the local business community.
Community Involved In Sustaining Agriculture
The Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) is a nonprofit organization working to sustain agriculture in Western Massachusetts through farm profitability, creating farmer/consumer relationships, buy local food campaigns, farmer's markets, and more.
Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources
The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources offers a variety of technical assistance and grant programs for farmers and farmers markets including agricultural business training for start ups and existing farms, farm energy grants, agricultural preservation restriction acquisitions, new farm start-up grants, 10% utility discounts for farms, farm viability grants for capital improvements on existing farms, and more.
Food Processing Center
The Franklin County Community Development Corporation operates a commercial kitchen, walk-in cooler and freezer, dry storage space, and a packaging area. The food processing center is open to farmers and food processing businesses in Western Massachusetts.
Organic Farming Research Foundation
The Organic Farming Research Foundation (OFRF) mission is to foster the improvement and widespread adoption of organic farming practices. OFRF translates research into practical resources and educational platforms that help organic farmers and ranchers implement best practices and advancements in organic agriculture.
FarmStart is a Farm Credit East program that makes working capital investments of up to $75,000 to northeast agricultural ventures showing promise of success. The innovative program targets startup farmers and ag businesses with limited financial resources and who are not generally eligible for conventional lending programs.
The Carrot Project Micro Loan Program
The mission of the Carrot Project Micro Loan Program is to address the difficulty that some New England farmers have in obtaining credit for projects that improve their operations and increase their income, as well as for emergency needs. The Carrot Project has teamed up with MassDevelopment to help small farmers finance projects that improve their operations and increase their income.
PVGrows Loan Fund
The PV Grows Investment Fund for farmers and food entrepreneurs offer flexible financing and technical assistance that helps grow their businesses.
Farm Viability Enhancement Program
The Farm Viability Enhancement Program (FVEP) provides business planning and technical assistance to help established farms identify strategies to increase farm viability such as, new or expanded enterprises, increased productivity, marketing, and/or environmental sustainability. Participants selected to participate in the program may be offered grant funds of $50,000 to $150,000 to implement strategies identified during the planning process in return for signing an agricultural covenant on the farm property to keep it in agricultural use for a 5 or 10 or 15-year term. Eligible uses of funds are capital projects on the farm such as building or repairing barns, farm stands or other agricultural buildings, modernizing equipment, or improving food processing capacity.
Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership
The Massachusetts Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MassMEP) is a non-profit service available to manufacturers to improve efficiency, achieve profitable growth, and successfully compete in the global marketplace. MassMEP will help you evaluate needs, problems and customized solutions. MassMEP enables even the smallest firms in Massachusetts to have easy access to more than 2,000 manufacturing, technical, and business specialists, along with the latest technology and industry best practices.
- Business Planning and Enterprise Development
- Innovation and Product Development
- Supply Chain Management and Collaboration
- Lean Manufacturing and Process Improvement
- Quality Improvement Assurance
- Information Technology Management
- Management and Workforce Training
- Global Engagement and International Business Development
- Sustainability Assessments / Improvements
Western Mass Contact
Karen Carswell, Project Manager - Continuous Improvement; Phone: 774-329-9159
National Tooling & Machining Association
The Western Massachusetts Chapter of the National Tooling and Machining Association and its more than 60 member companies are committed to developing technology, providing applications, engineering support, implementing sustainable workforce development strategies, enhancing employee skills and developing business partnerships.
Western Mass Contact
Chris Garvey, General Manager
28 Hudson Drive
Southwick, MA 01077
New England Trade Adjustment Assistance Center
The New England Trade Adjustment Assistance Center (NETAAC) was formed to aid New England manufacturing companies that have been negatively impacted by import trade. Qualifying businesses receive financial assistance through a cost-sharing model that helps to fund business-building consulting projects. These projects can include marketing and positioning strategies, e-commerce, lean manufacturing implementation, and ISO compliance and registration initiatives. A detailed list of qualifying assistance is included on this site under NETAAC Assistance.
National Association of Manufacturers
The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) is the largest manufacturing association in the United States. NAM offers national level advocacy for manufacturers, offers data and research reporting on manufacturing issues and lobbies for specific issues affecting manufacturers.
Small Business Resources
Cooperative Development Institute
The Cooperative Development Institute (CDI) is the Northeast's nonprofit center for cooperative business education, training and technical assistance. CDI is committed to building sustainable rural and urban communities where people work together to meet their needs, have access to quality jobs, affordable products and services, and share ownership of essential resources. The organization provides education, training and technical assistance to existing and start-up cooperatively-structured enterprises in all business sectors: food, housing, energy, agriculture, arts, health, forestry, fisheries, retail, service and more.
International Franchise Association
The International Franchise Association, founded in 1960, is a membership organization of franchises, franchisees and suppliers. IFA is dedicated to providing a one-stop shopping experience for franchise information.
Massachusetts Export Center
The Massachusetts Export Center offers a full range of targeted, customized services to Massachusetts businesses at any stage in the export process. The Massachusetts Export Center helps companies throughout the Commonwealth achieve success in global markets, thereby contributing to economic growth in the state. The goal is to meet the complex needs of exporters by developing and providing targeted, high-impact services delivered through a statewide network of international trade professionals.
Massachusetts Office of Business Development
The Massachusetts Office of Business Development assists businesses relocating to Massachusetts as well as businesses wishing to expand their current operations, with specific attention being paid to jobs created, jobs retained, and capital invested.
Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment
The Massachusetts Office of International Trade & Investment (MOITI) is the Commonwealth’s primary international business development agency charged with promoting trade and investment with global partners in Massachusetts and around the world.
Non-Profit Finance Fund
The Nonprofit Finance Fund (NFF) promotes the success of nonprofits by providing capital, strategic consulting, and using its knowledge and influence to transform the funding and financing landscape.
SelectUSA works one-on-one with companies to demystify federal rules and regulations, provide data and other information, and link companies with partners and resources to help them succeed.
Service Corp of Retired Executives (SCORE)
SCORE remains dedicated to its mission of fostering vibrant small business communities through mentoring and education. SCORE is a nonprofit organization that provides free and confidential business mentoring services to prospective and established small-business owners in the United States.
Small Business Administration
Startup America Partnership
The Startup America Partnership is a private organization working to help young companies succeed by bringing together some of the country’s most successful organizations to provide valuable resources to young companies with high growth potential. Partnership resources and assistance include talent, services, expertise, customers and capital. The partnership has created regional networks to identify and help accelerate entrepreneurial ecosystems across the country.
Valley Community Development Corporation (CDC)
Valley Venture Mentors
Valley Venture Mentors is a Western Massachusetts nonprofit with a mission to help entrepreneurs turn their ideas into thriving, scalable businesses. Companies receive a fire-hose of advice over the course of six months. Mentors get an exciting, engaging monthly event where they can meet fellow veteran business executives and young ventures worthy of assistance. Mentors and entrepreneurs also gain something else: a venue where they can quickly and efficiently “speed date” to find the right mentor/entrepreneur match.
VentureWell works directly with a variety of early-stage innovators to help them bring their ideas to market through workshops and training, coaching and mentoring, funding and awards. VentureWell supports faculty in developing programs that cultivate student innovators and promote institutional change through grants, workshops, training, and conferences.
Western Massachusetts Economic Development Council (EDC)
The Homefield Advantage Program at the Economic Development Council provides real estate, financial access, regional data, marketing, peer networking and workforce development support to businesses in the region.
Western Massachusetts Small Business Development Center
The Western Massachusetts Regional SBDC, a counseling center of the Massachusetts Small Business Development Center Network, provides free and confidential one-to-one counseling to prospective and existing small businesses in western Massachusetts. Areas of assistance include business plan development, pre-venture feasibility, conventional and non-conventional financing, cash flow analysis, organizational and personnel issues and marketing. The SBDC also offers low-cost seminars, workshops, courses and conferences addressing a wide range of concerns for both start-up and existing businesses.
- Scibelli Enterprise Center, One Federal Street, Building 101, Springfield, MA 01105
- 413-577-1768 | Fax 413-737-2312
Western New England University - Small Business Legal Assistance
Western New England University offers a Small Business Legal Clinic as a resource for small business development in the Pioneer Valley region. The Small Business Legal Clinic offers personal, professional assistance to entrepreneurs in the business startup stage, free of charge through the Small Business Clinic and community outreach events.
Business Grants for Minorities
Funding and grant opportunities for minority-owned businesses.
Best Resources for Black Entrepreneurs
Women Business Owners Alliance of the Pioneer Valley
The Women Business Owners Alliance of the Pioneer Valley provides support to women entrepreneurs and builds business skills through progression development, meetings, seminars and peer to peer networking.
The Center for Women and Enterprise (CWE) helps support women looking to start and/or grow their businesses. The CWE employees individuals with a variety of racial, ethnic and socio-economic backgrounds and has worked with more than 37,000 entrepreneurs in New England since 1995.