1 May 2018: The Government announced in January 2018 that the Better Public Services programme would not continue in this form. These pages have been archived.


Result 9-10

Result 9: Better for Business - delivering Better Public Services to business customers

Why is this important for New Zealand?

Business customers have told us that they find government services complex and fragmented, and that dealing with government takes more cost and effort than it should.

Better for Business is a partnership of government agencies working to make it easier and more efficient for business customers to deal with government. For business people, this means less effort on administration and more time to focus on growing their business.

By reducing effort and improving services we can help New Zealand businesses have a competitive edge in the local and global economy. 

Better for Business:

  1. Collaborates and partners with government agencies and promotes better ways of working.
  2. Advocates for the business customer from a position of knowledge.
  3. Works with the private sector and agencies to accelerate and support new initiatives.

Better for Business is led by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment and delivered in partnership with ACC, Callaghan Innovation, Inland Revenue, Ministry for Primary Industries, New Zealand Customs Service, New Zealand Trade and Enterprise, New Zealand Transport Agency, Statistics New Zealand and WorkSafe.

How will we know we are achieving our targets?

To drive change the government set the public sector two challenging targets:

  1. Business costs (effort) from dealing with government will reduce by 25% by 2017, through a year-on-year reduction in effort required to work with agencies.
  2. Government services to business will have similar key performance ratings as leading private sector firms by July 2017.

To track progress towards these targets the Better for Business partnership uses a rolling monthly monitor surveying 1200 business owners every six months.

Latest survey results

Results to December 2016 show:

Overall effort for businesses when dealing with government dropped by one index point, from 94 in June to 93 in December. Private sector effort is also relatively unchanged at 84 index points.

The gap between the public and private sector is now nine index points, an improvement of eight index points since 2013. Overall satisfaction with government service delivery has not changed significantly in the last two years, with results fluctuating between 57% and 60%.

The use of digital services (measured across a basket of nine business-facing services) increased over the six month to December 2016 from 55% to 62%.

What are we doing to achieve the targets?

Recent service improvement for business customers by Result 9 agencies include:

  • Making tax simpler - Businesses can now file GST through Xero and MYOB accounting software. Hundreds of businesses who started using the service in January 2016 say it's faster, simpler, mistake-free and cuts double handling. By early 2017 businesses will be able to manage their GST processes and customer information via improved myIR Secure Online Services; incorporated businesses can use their NZBN as a unique identifier when they contact IR; and new migrants will be able to digitally register with Inland Revenue, get an IRD number and register for myIR by reusing their personal information from their visa application.
  • New Zealand Business Number - NZBN is a unique business identifier that will over time help reduce the time and energy businesses spend providing government the same information in different ways. It will enable more consistent and joined-up services, saving businesses time and enabling greater e-commerce between businesses. Right now every company registered in New Zealand has an NZBN - at the end of 2016 NZBNs will be allocated to other kinds of businesses including sole traders, charities and partnerships.
  • Product recall portal - Businesses can now access a new MBIE Product Recall Portal which allows businesses to distribute recall information more effectively and may help reduce the cost of a recall.
  • Tenancy services - Businesses can now lodge bonds with Tenancy Services via a new online system, saving time for businesses by removing the need to write cheques and fill in forms manually.
  • R9 Accelerator - The Result 9 Better for Business programme began its accelerator programme in early 2015 and has run Accelerator 1.0 and 2.0. Planning is underway for Accelerator 3.0+ which will kick off in October 2016. R9 Accelerator partners private sector entrepreneurs, developers and mentors with public sector staff on projects to rapidly develop government products and services that could solve major pain points for NZ businesses.

By reducing the time and effort business owners spend on administration, government is helping the private sector grow their businesses and grow the economy.

Read what the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment are doing to achieve Result 9.

Result 10: New Zealanders can complete their transactions with government easily in a digital environment

Why is this important for New Zealand?

People want to deal with government in new and different ways and government needs to respond to that. Agencies need to re-think the way they deliver services, particularly given the public desire to access government services digitally. Customers expect service delivery from the government that is increasingly digital, responsive and personalised.

How will we know we are achieving this result?

Progress towards achieving Result 10 will be monitored using the following key target:

  • An average of 70 per cent of New Zealanders' most common transactions with government will be completed in a digital environment by 2017.

What are we doing to achieve this result?

The Result 10 team is currently working with eight key agencies measuring the digital uptake of transactional services against the target. Representatives of these agencies are working together to shape the direction of digital service initiatives so that people will increasingly choose to use digital channels for their transactions with government. We have created a shared vision of the future state of digital services and an agreed set of actions for achieving that vision - a blueprint for change.

Priorities include:

  • Responsibly managing the Government's finances by measuring service capability across government and improving the utilisation of government's service delivery infrastructure
  • Building a more competitive and productive economy by enabling New Zealanders to access better services faster for lower cost
  • Delivering better public services within tight financial constraints by co-designing services with the customer.

Read what the Department of Internal Affairs are doing to achieve Result 10.

What happened in the December 2016 quarter

Progress towards the target has now been measured for 18 quarters and started with a base figure of 29.9 per cent in June 2012.

The result for the October to December 2016 quarter (quarter 2) shows that an average of 58.0 per cent of all transactions measured was completed digitally during the quarter. This is:

  • 5.1 percentage points (or 9.6%) up on the comparable quarter of October to December 2015 (52.9% digital uptake). Nine of ten indicator transactions showed increases on that quarter
  • 6.1 percentage point (or 11.8%) increase on the previous quarter from July to September 2015 (51.9% digital uptake) with eight of ten indicator transactions reporting an increase in digital uptake.

The full report for Result 10’s December 2016 quarter Target Measurement is available on the Department of Internal Affairs' website.

Quarterly Measures - for October to December 2016



Oct-Dec 2015

Jul-Sep 2016

Oct-Dec 2016

Department of Conservation

Book Department of Conservation asset




NZ Customs Service

SmartGate departures and arrivals




Ministry of Business Innovation & Employment
(Immigration NZ)

Apply for visa




New Zealand Transport Agency

Pay for Vehicle Licence




New Zealand Police

Pay for fine on time




Inland Revenue

File an Individual Tax Return




Pay Individual Tax




Apply for an IRD Number




Ministry of Social Development

Apply for Financial Assistance (1)




Department of Internal Affairs

Renew adult passport (2)









(1) A change in reporting methodology for the transaction Apply for Financial Assistance came into effect during October-December 2013. It resulted in a decrease in the digital uptake of this transaction across all periods.
(2) The figures shown for Renew Adult Passport are estimated.

The latest March 2016 quarter results show that 78% of New Zealanders who used a digital transaction with government rated it as being an easy experience. This figure is provided using the results from the Kiwis Count survey.


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