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Business Resources

The Library offers a variety of resources to assist business owners including research resources, online learning, a blog, workshops, technology training and links to helpful websites.

Business Resources - Research


Online resources for business, financial, market research, and more.

Business Resources - Online Learning

Online Learning

Interactive online courses covering a variety of topics and technologies.

Business Resources - Upcoming Programs

Upcoming Programs

Check out our online calendar for a listing of upcoming business and technology-related classes

Additional Business Resources

SCORE Fox Valley

The Fox Valley Chapter of SCORE offers free business mentoring. You can make an appointment with them directly. You can also search their website for helpful information including templates for people looking to start and develop a business. Click on Browse the Library on the SCORE website for information, or type templates in the SEARCH bar to find useful templates to help you start a business and other activities.

Illinois 2019-2020 Small Business Resource Guide

Resource guide for small businesses in Illinois (published by U.S. Small Business Administration).

Illinois Small Business Development Center – College of DuPage

There are valuable workshops and seminars along with on-line training that can guide you as you turn your great idea into a great business. From guidance in the earliest stages to export assistance and expansion through government contracting you will have the tools and help you need to succeed. The College of DuPage Small Business Development Center is the place to start. Connect to the COD Business Development Center Facebook for updates on what College of DuPage can offer you.

Small Business Development Center – Waubonsee Community College

Small business owners can find needed informational, management, marketing and financial coaching with free one-on-one help. In addition, numerous low-cost and free events and workshops help businesses to be successful. Find out more about the Small Business Development Center at Waubonsee Community College here.

Illinois Small Business Development Center – Joliet Junior College  

Small business owners will find valuable information and coaching with free help.  There are also workshops and seminars that can help you succeed in business.  Find out more about the Small Business Development Center at Joliet Junior College, here.  

PPLD Small Business Information Guide

Starting or improving a business can be a daunting task. And the Library is here to help! The Plainfield Public Library is strategically situated to deliver no cost, focused attention and resources to help you with your small business.

The following resources can provide more information to help you on your way. You can also download our Small Business Information Guide here.

Angel and Venture Capitalists

Wealthy private investors are sometimes interested in funding a new business venture that has the potential for significant profit and tend to work through a formal network of investors.

Business Resource Partners

Organizations are available to help you get your business started and contribute to your economic success:


Free Funding/Grants:  You have to admit “free” funds sound great. The chances of getting “free” money are slim at best when looking to the government.  Possible funding may be available from:

Banks:  Local banks may be willing to work with you for a commercial loan but you need to be able to show a solid business plan and prove you can pay back the money from the bank.

Bootstrapping:  Small business people often finance their business with their own monies, credit cards, home equity loans or money borrowed from family and friends.

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Development has options for financing, grants and additional resources.

Small Business Administration does not give loans but they do give support to your bank loan request. There are also free online courses that can help get your business off the ground. Take a look at for useful information.

Village of Plainfield Economic Development:

Will County Center for Economic Development:

Women’s Business Development Center:

Hiring Employees
Intellectual Property

Don’t allow anyone to steal your intellectual property. Be sure to register them with federal agencies.

Information about patents and trademarks can be found at the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Copyright protection information can be found at the US Copyright Office.

Legal Ownership Structure

Before registering as a business, you need to decide on legal ownership structure, and you will need to file with the state.

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity - Small Business Assistance - Step by Step Guide

Check here for naming your business: Illinois Secretary of State - Corporate Name Availability Inquiry Form

  • Sole Proprietorship and General Partnership
  • Limited Partnership
  • Limited Liability Company
  • Limited Liability Partnership
  • "C" Corporation
  • "S" Corporation

See also:
SIU Small Business Development Center - Choosing a Business Structure

Here, you can find out about the various structures, what your responsibilities as an owner are and what you will need to do next, including where to register your business, how to get an EIN (Employer Identification Number), and where you can go for help. (Note: you need to know your business structure before applying for an EIN.)

Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) Online


You can find out about business licenses here. You will need to see what licenses you are required to have. Zoning and building, environmental concerns, health and safety concerns will need to be addressed.

Not for Profit
Register Your Business

You will need to register your business name.  Be sure to check to make sure your name is available – or if it is already actively in use.

Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity - Small Business Assistance - Step by Step Guide

Taxes and Insurance

Find out more about taxes and insurance in the State of Illinois.



You might want to get property damage, liability and business interruption insurance coverage.  Is there specialty insurance your business may need?  Be sure you are protected.

Write a Business Plan

Your business plan is the foundation and framework for your business: a blueprint for success. Lenders, possible investors and others will be interested in seeing your plan. A clear business plan can make a difference in the success of your business.

A business plan is often about 20 pages long and has your Executive Summary, Business Description, Management, Market Analysis and Strategy, Customers and Competition, Operations and Financial Analysis.

Here is a useful guide:

Business Planning & Financial Statements Template Gallery

Books available at the library can help guide you.  Check out our catalog here.

Additional Useful Resources

Having trouble opening PDFs? Download Adobe Reader here.

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