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Business use of ICT

Businesses may use ICT to increase productivity and growth, for example, by investing in ICT infrastructure to streamline processes, or by engaging in e-commerce to expand into international markets.


In New Zealand, the Business Operations Survey provides data on business use of ICT, including information on the outcomes of ICT use and the barriers to implementation. In Australia, the Business Characteristics Survey collects similar information. These surveys use the same industry classifications but their population coverage is slightly different.


Table 3 compares the Internet activities of businesses in New Zealand and Australia. For comparability, businesses with less than five employees were excluded from the Australian data, while two industries (agriculture, forestry, and fishing; and the education and training industries) were excluded from the New Zealand data because they were not covered by the ABS survey.

Table 3

 


In 2008, New Zealand had a lower percentage of businesses with broadband access compared with Australia. However, businesses in New Zealand were more likely to have a website and were more likely to place and receive orders over the Internet.


In both New Zealand and Australia, more than 90 percent of businesses had broadband access (91 percent in New Zealand and 96 percent in Australia). The percentage of businesses with a web presence (website) increases with business size. Sixty percent of New Zealand businesses had a website compared with 53 percent in Australia. Note that the figure for Australia may be slightly understated due to the inclusion of businesses with five employees.


New Zealand businesses were more likely to use the Internet to receive and place orders than businesses in Australia in all size groups. In New Zealand, 64 percent of businesses used the Internet to place orders (compared with 53 percent in Australia) and 42 percent used the Internet to receive orders (compared with 29 percent in Australia). The percentage of businesses that used the Internet to receive orders varied little by business size, especially in New Zealand (41 percent of small businesses and 46 percent of large businesses). 

 

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