About Better for Business

Better for Business (B4B) regularly surveys New Zealand businesses about their motivations and development goals, digital capability, environmental adaption and wellbeing.

These insights provide data-driven information which is used to develop policies and services to support small business.

We also ask them about their interactions with government, and use the insights to make it easier and more seamless for business to deal with government.

Our approach

We work to understand what it’s like for business to interact with government, and find ways to make it easier for them to do so.

We regularly survey businesses, and use the insights gained to identify opportunities to improve regulatory design and service delivery. 

We share  these insights with policy and operational teams within the agencies New Zealand businesses deal with most regularly, including the 10 government agencies that make up 83% of the interactions a business would normally have with government.

The insights help to identify, incubate and support initiatives focused on reducing the impact of compliance on small businesses.

Our long-term research with over 30,000 New Zealand businesses shows that improving the consistency of services and the coordination between agencies has the highest overall impact on business satisfaction with government.

The core focus is on unifying public services, which involves leveraging digital technologies, supporting small business digital enablement, and innovating approaches to policy, service design and delivery.

What we’ve done

Some of the services we have created, incubated or supported include:

The Better for Business ecosystem

We are part of the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s Small Business Collective.

The Small Business Collective represents the 2 MBIE branches most focussed on small business:

  • Business and Consumer
  • Small Business, Commerce and Consumer Policy.

Small Business Services includes:

  • business.govt.nz
  • Better for Business
  • the Regional Business Partner Network.

The government agencies we partner with include:

  • Inland Revenue
  • ACC
  • Ministry for Primary Industries
  • Waka Kotahi – New Zealand Transport Agency
  • New Zealand Customs Service
  • WorkSafe New Zealand
  • Stats NZ
  • New Zealand Trade and Enterprise
  • Callaghan Innovation
  • Department of Internal Affairs.

Our history

Better for Business was established in 2012 as part of ‘Better Public Services – Result 9’. At the time the programme had key targets in place, including reducing the cost of dealing with government by 25% and matching the private sector for ease of doing business.

Part of the early programme included the Result 9 Accelerator – which facilitated start-ups to build prototypes focused on reducing the cost of dealing with government using the latest technology and customer-centric design methods.

It brought public sector staff together with private sector entrepreneurs, developers and mentors to test new ideas and drive change.

In 2017, we adapted to be more responsive to the full business experience of government. We continue to work across government  to help reduce the impact of compliance on business and to identify opportunities to improve the overall experience of dealing with government.

While we continue to track effort, we have evolved our measurement to be more multi-dimensional – the Customer Experience Index – which has been measuring the overall quantity and quality of businesses dealings with government since mid-2017.

Last updated: 27 March 2024