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Report looks at state of rural economy

15 June 2018

Report looks at state of rural economy - top tech trends in rural sector identified

A new report into the state of the rural economy finds that one-third of rural businesses expect more sales in the next quarter, verse 16 percent who see sales declining.

With the nation’s agricultural focus on Fieldays, the annual MYOB Rural Business Monitor also finds some optimism about the year ahead with 38 percent of rural business owners predicting revenue will be up in 12 months’ time, while just 13 per cent expect their revenues to decrease over the next 12 months.

“In the face of international uncertainties, impending trade wars, rising fuel prices and immigration cuts, New Zealand’s rural sector – and the industries that work to support it – continue to demonstrate strength, optimism and resilience,” says MYOB New Zealand General Manager Carolyn Luey.

The report finds 29 percent of rural businesses expect to increase investment in plant and equipment in the coming year, while 14 percent will invest in IT systems and processes. Hiring intentions in the sector are constrained with just 7 percent of rural businesses looking to take on new employees.

MYOB also looked at attitudes to technology in the rural sector and finds connectivity, automation/robotics and drones were the top three trends most likely to impact their industry over the coming decade.

“MYOB has been involved with New Zealand’s rural-based businesses for more than two decades. During that time we’ve seen the growing importance of technology to the rural sector,” says Ms Luey.

“Although data doesn’t make the grass grow, it’s certainly important for running the business. It’s no surprise that connectivity came out on top as the most important tech trend.

“MYOB is the largest provider of accounting software services to the rural sector. We’re focused on providing the technological solutions that help rural businesses succeed and playing our part in helping turn farms into tech-enabled businesses,” says Ms Luey.

MYOB Rural Business Monitor results - tech trends

What technology trend do you believe have had the greatest impact on your industry?
1. Improvements in connectivity – 30%
2. Internet-of-things – 18%
3. Cloud computing – 15%

What technology trend do you believe will have the most impact on your industry in the coming decade?
1. Improvements in connectivity – 24%
2. Drones - 20%
3. Automation and robotics – 18%

Rural business performance

Revenue change in past 12 months
29% increase
22% decrease

Revenue expectations in next 12 months
29% increase
13% decrease

Rural investment

Expecting to increase investment in plant and equipment
29% of rural businesses

Expecting to increase investment in IT systems and processes
14% of rural businesses

Click here to download a copy of the MYOB Rural Business Monitor.


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