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Supporting innovation in business is crucial for fostering growth, competitiveness, and sustainability in today's dynamic marketplace. At Northern Regional College, we understand the importance of innovation as a driving force behind business success. Through tailored programs, expert guidance, and strategic partnerships, we empower businesses to embrace innovation by providing access to resources, training, and opportunities for collaboration. Whether through bespoke training programs, industry-specific workshops, or facilitating connections with research institutions and funding bodies, we are committed to equipping businesses with the tools and support needed to cultivate a culture of innovation.


Through the Department for the Economy’s InnovateUs programme, the College Business Engagement Team will enable you to increase your business capacity to innovate, by providing opportunities to acquire the skills necessary to engage in innovation and development activities. These will assist your business in bringing an idea to the market as a new product, service or process and to encourage your business to raise your innovation levels long term.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Registered Business including social enterprise (excludes charity or community groups)
  • Based in Northern Ireland
  • Less than 50 employees
  • Need to develop innovation best practice within the business

A Business Engagement Officer will discuss individual business needs and complete a brief skills audit. This will determine the duration of project, between 10-60 hours fully funded, and a unique, tailored plan will be created, implemented and delivered. This will enable company employees to innovate now and continue to innovate in the future as a consequence of training.

Example Skill Areas

  • Robotics/Automation
  • Software/AI Development
  • Product Development
  • Product Testing

Benefits to employers

  • Delivery is designed and developed to be tailored to your business
  • Training delivery is flexible (online, in house, at a College campus or via blended learning)
  • Increased innovation and growth within your business
  • Opportunity to develop innovation best practice to help both now and in the future

Case Studies

Case study: Bailey Architecture Case study: Brocraft Engineering Case study: Campsie Radiator Specialists
Case study: DA Forgie Case study: Glenshane Country Farm Case study: Articlave Daycare


Northern Regional College is a Knowledge Provider Partner with Invest NI in the delivery of the Innovation Voucher Programme. This programme could provide funding, of up to £5,000, to small and medium-sized enterprises to work with an expert from Northern Regional College, bringing new knowledge to help the business innovate, develop and grow.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Registered small to medium sized enterprise (excludes transport and primary agricultural sectors)
  • Based in Northern Ireland
  • Not in receipt of R&D Grant in past 5 years
  • Willing and able to pay VAT element applicable and project costs in excess of voucher value
  • A need for the funding for the project to proceed

Northern Regional College can provide application support, specialist guidance and, if successful, knowledge and expertise to help you tackle specific business issues.

Typical projects funded by Invest NI are:

  • Ideas for new or improved products, processes and services
  • Validation and testing of new/enhanced products/services
  • Access to specialist information and expertise on new materials
  • Tapping into research and scientific expertise

Invest NI

To review the programmes terms and conditions and FAQ’s please visit Invest NI.