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Addressing New Zealand’s Productivity Crisis By Tapping Into Digital Skills As A Superpower

New Zealand, a nation renowned for its innovative spirit and entrepreneurial zeal, is currently facing a productivity crisis. Despite our robust economy and thriving business sector, productivity growth has been stagnant and many businesses are struggling to stay ahead of the pace of change. For savvy business owners, tapping into digital skills shouldn't be an ‘option’ but a superpower to help drive more effective and competitive outcomes at pace.

Digital Boost, a Government-funded free learning platform for NZ’s small and medium sized businesses, offers a pathway to elevate performance and productivity quickly for Kiwi business owners.

The productivity challenge

Productivity is a critical factor in economic growth and competitiveness but New Zealand’s productivity levels have been lagging behind other developed countries. Several factors contribute to this issue, including limited access to digital tools, insufficient digital literacy and the high cost of digital transformation for small and medium businesses. In short - entrepreneurs find themselves overwhelmed by the digital landscape, unsure of where to start or how to leverage digital tools to enhance their operations.

Digital skills - a shortcut to success

Digital skills are the cornerstone of modern business success because they enable businesses to streamline operations, reach new customers and improve overall efficiency. For New Zealand’s businesses, in particular, embracing digital skills can be a game-changer given limited resources.

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But given the plethora of focuses in this area - what’s the best way to get started and up to speed as quickly as possible?

This is where Digital Boost, a FREE New Zealand Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE)-funded initiative, becomes invaluable. Digital Boost is a free video learning platform designed specifically for New Zealand businesses. It offers a wealth of resources, including expert advice, online support and digital action plans.

academyEX was a key partner for the design and build of this full service education offering , including its learning management system, the creation of learning content and a support team of digital experts to support participating businesses.

With over 1,400 bite-sized learning videos and a vibrant community of 69,000 users and growing, Digital Boost is empowering businesses across 20 different industries—including manufacturing, export, construction, agritech, and tourism—to harness the power of digital tools.

Why Digital Boost?

Expert advice and live events: Digital Boost hosts twice-weekly live online events featuring experts on topics from Google Ads and Meta Business Suite to payroll and Canva. These sessions provide businesses with an opportunity to deep dive and get the latest insights.

Online support: A dedicated support team is available five days a week, from 9 am to 7 pm, to guide businesses through their digital transformation journey. This ensures that businesses receive timely assistance and can effectively implement digital strategies.

Bespoke actionable plans: Digital Boost offers tailored plans to help businesses supercharge their online presence and use digital tools to work smarter, not harder. This includes ‘Checkable’, a free diagnostic tool that helps businesses assess their visibility and prominence. By simply adding their web address and social media handles, businesses can download a personalised digital action plan to make high-impact changes. The tool also offers a health check for security and SEO, providing instant, actionable tips on how businesses can improve their strategies and see how they compare against their competitors.

The power of community

Being in business can be a lonely journey, especially for business owners and sole operators. Digital Boost has fostered a peer-to-peer community where business owners can connect with peers, share their digital dilemmas and receive empathetic support. The platform’s Facebook community is a thriving space where businesses post queries and get instant feedback from fellow business owners and the support team.

Embracing AI and future technologies

There is growing recognition among businesses of the importance of staying ahead of future technologies that are rapidly reshaping how we conduct business. One of the most popular resources on Digital Boost is the AI playlist, which includes tips and tricks for utilising AI to drive productivity, giving business owners the knowledge and confidence needed to embrace AI and other emerging technologies.

New Zealand’s productivity crisis requires innovative solutions, and digital skills offer a promising pathway to enhance performance and competitiveness. Digital Boost is at the forefront of this transformation, providing free, accessible resources to help Kiwi businesses thrive in the digital age. The journey to a more productive New Zealand begins with tapping into digital skills as a ‘superpower’.

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