What Is the Level Up Program?

The Level Up program is a Sunshine Coast Council funded program aimed at helping local startups, small and medium businesses connect to the NBN (where available), and fully utilise digital tools, innovation principles and business solutions to enable them to improve their productivity, profitability and ability to compete nationally and internationally, where desired.

Surviving in business is a lot like a game. You start at Level 1, and as you become more skilled, you work your way up the levels. The more you play, the better you get. In the digital era, the game has changed. You have to have digital skills if you want to survive.  So what are you waiting for?

Let’s play!


Regardless of what sort of internet user you may be, chances are you’ve thought about what the NBN will mean for your business. With rollouts occurring across the region now, we are fast approaching the point when you will have to investigate what is available to you, and make good business decisions about which provider you will utilise to connect to it.

The way we live, work and play on the has fundamentally changed with the advent of faster internet, not just here on the Sunshine Coast but across the world. If you aren’t accessing faster internet, you are at a distinct competitive disadvantage. And you could be working harder than you need to for a lesser result in your business. Let us help you get technology working for you, and spend more time doing what you love, whatever that may be.

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Lesson 1: Getting Online

  • How to get online with faster internet, and being safe and smart online with storage and backups.
  • Learn about ISPs (internet service providers), NBN versus Broadband, satellite – how to research a provider, get online etc.
  • Learn how to be safe and smart online
  • Explore your storage options and keeping your data safe including introduction to tools such as Dropbox, box.net, G Drive and more.
  • Learn whatyou need to know about backups in the cloud and best practice measures to keep your data & business safe online.
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Lesson 2 – Working More Efficiently Online

An introduction to:

  • G Suite
  • Office 365
  • basic and essential uses of cloud technology
  • Google Calendar
  • Gmail
  • Drive etc.
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Lesson 3 – Communicating & Collaborating Online

An introduction to:

  • What communication & collaboration systems exist out there
  • How to gaining efficiencies on email and whether you really even need to use email as much as you do
  • Tools to help you get on top of your emails in the first instance, and then manage your inbox faster and easier
  • Tools to work out what your time is being spent on and how to increase efficiency around communication and through collaboration
  • What is instant messaging and how you can use it for business operations
  • How to streamline communications coming in through multiple channels using tools such as Slack
  • How to collaborate online using tools such as Skype, Google Hangout, Viber & more
  • The future of online communication and collaboration – Facebook for Work, Facebook Messages, Video and more.
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Lesson 4: Using More Online Video In Your Business

What you will learn:

  • What is video conferencing
  • What is screen and video capture
  • Tools for video conferencing, capturing & editing video
  • Google Hangouts, Skype
  • Webinar technology such as Crowdcast, GoToWebinar, WebEx & WebinarJam
  • How creating video touch-points can  help convert leads into clients and train your staff
  • How to plan your video content properly, so you’re creating the right video for the right purpose, at the right time.
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Level 5  – Online Banking and Ecommerce Solutions

What you will learn:

  • How to get started with banking online and why it’s imperative to have a separate bank account for your personal affairs and your business affairs
  • What accounts, products and services you need to run your business
  • Which transaction banking and merchant facilities are out there and how to decide what your business needs
  • The types of bank fees you might be up for when it comes to online banking and ecommerce solutions
  • What EFTPOS and POS (point of sale) solutions are out there
  • Exploring your ecommerce solutions – Paypal, Stripe, eWay & more
  • Efficiencies to be had if you are already doing banking online including integrating and syncing your accounts from point of sale to your accounts system, and from your ecommerce website to your accounts system to save you hours on data entry!
  • Apps and tools which can help you keep a track of your finances online


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Lesson 6 – Accounting & Payroll Online

What will you learn:

  • What online accounting systems are out there and what you should look for when selecting one for your business
  • Some of the features available on online accounting systems
  • What online payroll solutions are out there and what you should look for when selecting one for your business
  • The benefits of setting up employees on online payroll, managing leave, time sheets, processing pay runs and a look at payroll reports
  • The benefits of sending a quote online, sending an invoice online and setting up recurring billing
  • How to set up auto-reminders saving you time following up outstanding invoices and keeping your debtors down
  • Options to integrate your online accounting with your CRM, bank, and much more
  • Which mobile apps are available to manage payroll and your online accounts
  • Giving access to business advisers and different levels of access
  • And much more!
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Lesson 7 – Online procedures & systems

What you will learn:

  • What an operations manual is and why you need one
  • Understand the difference between processes, procedures and standards
  • Explore the benefits of creating processes, procedures and standards for your business
    What a procedure is and how to create one
  • Coming up with a plan of what processes, procedures and standards your business might need based on your core business activities
  • How to create effective processes, procedures and standards
  • Options for taking your procedures, processes and standards online
  • How you can collaborate on the creation and update of your procedures, processes and standards online
  • Methods of sharing your procedures, processes and standards online so your networks are aware of them on creation and know where to access them into the future
  • And more
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LEVEL 8Streamlining and automating business operations online

What you will learn:

  • Streamlining and automating business operations online – An introduction to add-ons, online ecosystems, data automations, apis and more
  • What automation is and why you should take a look at it
  • Automation Systems out there – what is worth taking a look at
  • Who uses it and who does it well
  • The differences between automations and triggers highlight two different aspects of your support workflow: time and action.
  • How to find more cool software to plug into your business, how to evaluate, implement and monitor performance
  • And much more!
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LEVEL 9 – Customer Experience Systems

What you will learn:

  • How to map your customer journeys / life cycles
  • Considering online platforms your customers may have interactions with your company on such as your website, phone, email, live chat, social media, text and other emerging communication mediums
  • What is a CRM and why every company needs one
  • What your options are for CRM systems, online phone systems and other customer experience platforms
  • How you can integrate customer experience systems
  • The advent of chat bots and other cutting edge customer experience systems
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LEVEL 10 – Customer Satisfaction Systems

What you will learn:

  • Why it is important to measure if your customers are satisfied
  • Why digital customer satisfaction systems can be better than paper copies
  • Different systems you can use to measure if your customers are satisfied
  • Which systems suit which industries, customer bases and situations
  • Compare system’s features that make them unique and an overview of their pricing plans
  • Which customer satisfaction systems integrate with other online softwares
  • What questions to ask – collecting qualitative versus quantitative data
  • How long is too long when it comes to preparing customer surveys?
  • How to access and interpret the results of customer satisfaction systems and how often you should be doing it


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LEVEL 11 – Other online systems your business could use

What you will learn:

  • What your options are for providing training online both live and recorded to both your internal team, your customers, and the public
  • What an online project management system is and how it can improve your productivity
  • What online project management systems exist out there
  • What sorts of features you can expect from a project management system
  • And more!
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LEVEL 12 – Open Data, Data Analytics & Dashboards

What you will learn:

  • What data is and why you might like to track and analyse it
  • How to identify your businesses KPIs (key performance indicators) and track them
  • What dashboard software is out there and how to select one to monitor your business performance
  • What open data is and how you can use it in your business
  • What data analytics software exists
  • How to find more cool software to plug into your business, how to evaluate, implement and monitor performance
  • And much more!
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"Our café relies on a digital POS system to enable us to manage our orders and serve our customers in a fast and efficient way. Best of all, the POS links up to our accounting software meaning that managing our financial records is done in a few clicks."

Richie & Sanna Kidd, Scandic Café, Maroochydore