It’s official: the internet is jolly useful for businessJanuary 9 - 1pm
Using the internet could transform the New Zealand economy by improving productivity.
That’s according to a new study which shows that local businesses using cloud technologies are more likely to be increasing revenue, selling more and paying better than those which aren’t.
The study is MYOB’s Business Monitor, which surveyed 1000 business owners around the country to show that businesses using cloud solutions are more successful.
These businesses are 13% more likely to have had revenue growth over the last 12 months, 43% more likely to have more work or sales in the pipeline for the next quarter, and 54% more likely to be diversifying their business and product offerings.
Employees were also likely to see the benefits, with businesses making use of cloud solutions 61% more likely to be increasing staff wages and salaries over the coming year and 33% more likely to hire additional staff.
Financial & Operational Results for businesses using the cloud:
• Revenue growth in 2011 financial year – cloud users 13% more likely to have grown 2012, Q3 sales pipeline – cloud users 43% more likely to have more work on 2013 revenue forecast – cloud users 55% more likely to forecast growth diversification of products and services – cloud users 54% more likely to be diversifying
• Hiring intentions – cloud users 33% more likely to be increasing staffing
• Staff salaries and wages – cloud users 61% more likely to be increasing
• Economic confidence – cloud users 41% confident the economy will improve < 12 months
MYOB general manager Julian Smith says business owners are using a variety of internet based services and products to change the way they work; becoming more efficient and more productive improves profitability.
“Cloud also reflects a new way of working – allowing businesses to become more mobile and their teams to work remotely, and for teams and businesses to collaborate.”
Furthermore, “These businesses also found lower costs in a range of areas – from reduced IT management to scalable technology costs.”
Consumers are in on the action, too. Kiwi consumers are also likely to benefit from increased use of the cloud.
29% of businesses in the MYOB Business Monitor said they would pass on any administrative cost savings directly to customers.
“Cloud solutions help to make businesses more profitable and competitive. They can help also make products and services more affordable for consumers,” says Smith.
NZIER principal economist Shamubeel Eaqub says the results of the survey highlight the potentially transformational effects of the internet for the local economy.
“How we use technology to overcome the tyranny of distance and our small scale, could define new Zealand and our place in the world in the 21st century. Businesses which aren’t embracing the internet are missing out on real competitive advantages, and that means losing market share.”
Smith says although the results for businesses using the internet are compelling, many companies continue to miss out; currently, just 14% of new Zealand businesses use cloud services, and only 35% have their own website.
“As consumers, we are some of the world leaders in the way we use the internet to buy, sell and share online.
However, as business owners we are some way off the pace,” says Smith.
“Businesses tell us that the main barriers to cloud is that they don’t know enough to make informed decisions; they have concerns about how and where their data will be stored and managed; and they quite simply have too many other priorities.”
Smith says that highlights the need for a mass-market approach to promoting the benefits of the internet.
“It’s not enough to build the technology and talk about technical details. We must make it easy for time-poor business owners to understand the benefits and adapt new internet-based tools and services.”