Commentary: An entrepreneur’s perspective with Susanna Cluff-Clyburne and Lianne Ing

In our continuing conversations with small business owners to get their perspective on how businesses are managing through the pandemic, the Canadian Chamber’s Susanna Cluff-Clyburne, Senior Director of Parliamentary Affairs, talks with Lianne Ing.

Lianne is the Vice President of Bubble Technology Industries Inc., sits on the Canadian Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, and is a member of the Canadian Chamber SME Committee. Bubble Technology is a 50-person business based in Chalk River, Ontario. Chalk River a rural community of about 1,000 people located 180km northwest of Ottawa along the Ottawa River. The company is primarily involved in the defense industry, providing radiation and explosive detection technology.

The company, deemed an essential service by the Ontario Government, has been continuing to operate through the pandemic. However 80% of their workforce is now required to work remotely, which is exposing the challenges of limited rural broadband connectivity and impacting the ability of rural staff to efficiently complete their work.

The company works in an industry with long sales cycles, and so are concerned about the financial impacts that may be coming in 12-18 months as the brakes are put on future projects, and what support programs may exist at that time. Additionally, they hope that government will make near-term infrastructure investments to improve their ability to have staff work remotely and access broadband internet.