The UN Global Compact is a strategic policy initiative for businesses committed to aligning their operations with ten universally accepted principles. With over 12,000 corporate participants and other stakeholders from over 145 countries, it is the largest voluntary corporate responsibility initiative in the world. The vast Global Compact Library is an important tool to browse for publications by sector and topic of interest.
UN Comtrade provides a wealth of trade information to policy makers, the business community, research institutions and the general public. It stores standardised official annual trade statistics reported by countries and reflects international merchandise flows detailed by commodity and partner country with coverage reaching up to 99 percent of world merchandise trade. UN Comtrade gives you instant access to more than 1.75 billion records on merchandise trade from over 200 reporting countries or areas covering 48 years of data and more than 6000 different products. With UN Comtrade you spend your time researching instead of searching.
Collected from a variety of sources, the World Bank’s private sector related data on areas including: domestic credit to private sector, enterprise surveys, household consumption data and much more provides a global snapshot of private sector related data. Visit World Bank Data.
The Doing Business project by the World Bank Group provides objective measures of business regulations across 189 economies and selected cities at the subnational and regional level. The project looks at domestic small and medium-size companies and measures the regulations applying to them through their life cycle.
This inventory maps existing business tools against the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It allows you to explore commonly used business tools that may be useful when assessing your organization’s impact on the SDGs. Later additional types of tools will also be added. You can use the filter below to explore tools for a specific SDG Goal. To continue working with the inventory in MS Excel, you can either download the full inventory or only the tools that match your search or filters.
Given the complex arrangements for exporting products or services, the Caribbean Exporter’s Toolkit by the Caribbean Export Development Agency is an invaluable resource for businesses in the region to guide them in achieving success in exporting. The toolkit provides a 10 step guide to successful exporting for Caribbean businesses including in areas of creating an export plan, market research, product pricing and financing.
Online Tools and Applications for Small Business
While there are a myriad of business friendly tools available online, we’ve compiled a range of these which have been proven over time to greatly help small businesses with limited resources. Many are free to use and can greatly enhance the day to day operations of budget conscious businesses.
Knowing where your web traffic originates is an important factor for new and small businesses to help in their marketing strategies. Google Analytics allows businesses to learn about the demographics of their target market. Users can see in which countries their websites have been viewed, percentage differences in traffic drivers and key statistics broken down by day, week, month, or year.
Google Apps for Work allows users to set up email addresses for their business – containing the name of their business in the address – plus gain access to familiar Google tools and applications as well as from third party developers.
Google Drive is a cloud storage and management service which allows users to access their documents from any device and from any location. Aside from going paperless, this is a boon for small business owners to easily store their documents and work on them from any location. Think of it as your virtual filing cabinet. Google Docs, the cloud based suite of business productivity tools, can also be found in Google Drive.
For a small business just starting off, an online presence through a website or blog is an important first step to take. Wix is a great resource for website and blog creation, especially for those who are less tech savvy. Wix uses a drag and drop template for ease of use and with hundreds of templates available, businesses can customize their site as they wish.
Much like Wix above, WordPress is another option for creating a website with ease. With hundreds of templates to choose from and many more from third party developers, WordPress provides a versatile content management system on which to build a business website with little experience.
To go along with creating your business website is the important decision of web hosting and obtaining a business domain name. GoDaddy provides a hosting platform – aside from the ability to also create websites – which is also compatible with WordPress.
Spreading the word, for a small business is imperative. While social media is one way to do this, another useful tool is MailChimp. With simple templates, MailChimp enables users to create well designed email newsletters to distribute to their contacts that will grab attention and also helps drive traffic flow to your business website.
While Skype has been around for many years, it continues to be an important tool both for its phone service, chat and video capabilities. In addition, users can send documents instantly, even during a call. This multi-use ability makes for a strong tool for small businesses.
For a small business looking to hire the best talent for their startup, LinkeIn provides an online directory of resumes and the chance to connect with like-minded individuals. A business is dependent on the talent of its employees, and LinkedIn is one way to access a vast talent pool.
Slideshare is a slide hosting service which allows users to upload files privately or publicly such as PowerPoint, PDF, Keynote or OpenDocument presentations and allows businesses to easily view slide shows from any location and embed them on their websites.
For small businesses operating out of temporary locations, Square provides credit card readers attached directly to a smart phone or tablet.
A file hosting service which allows users can save all their images, documents and video to be accessed from any location by syncing with multiple devices. Dropbox also allows ease of sharing files with other users for efficient collaboration from any location.