NZ plans one-stop digital service for businesses


By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Wednesday, 17 July, 2019



NZ plans one-stop digital service for businesses

New Zealand’s Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) expects to deliver NZ$300 million ($287 million) in savings to businesses and government departments through the provision of a new digital platform aimed at simplifying their interactions with government.

The Ministry has selected New Zealand IT services company Datacom Group to build the cloud-based Business Connect platform, using software from US-based Pegasystems.

The new Business Connect platform aims to integrate multiple services to allow businesses to interact seamlessly with all levels of government through a single portal.

The government has allocated NZ$7.1 million over two years towards the development of the platform, which is expected to enter a pilot stage in October.

During this pilot, services from an initial three agencies — the the Ministry for Primary Industries, the Ministry of Business Innovation and Employment, and NZ Customs Service — will be made available.

“The pilot agencies will allow the platform to be tested in a real-world environment directly with businesses. Other central and local government agencies will gradually come on board over two years,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said.

“In time businesses will be able to apply for a range of permits, licences and consents, without having to repeat the same information and documentation over and over. Examples could include services that help make it easier to comply with food safety regulations.”

The project forms part of the Better for Business program, which is a cross-agency program involving agencies accounting for around 83% of all business interactions with government. Local government makes up another 10%.

Business Connect will allow businesses to log on to a customised dashboard, and to update their information in one place and share it across multiple agencies. Businesses with New Zealand Business Numbers will have their details prepopulated on the platform.

The platform will be available to all businesses, but small businesses in particular are expected to benefit — particularly those requiring a permit or licence to operate.

The projected NZ$300 million in economic benefits will be generated through reduced time and effort in compliance administration, faster processing of applications, less scope for errors, and increased business productivity, the Prime Minister said.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/Raman Khilchyshyn

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