Last week, I was fortunate to be named a finalist in the AUT Business School Excellence in Business Support Awards. In my category, I feel honoured to stand alongside two well known leaders who have made amazing contributions to New Zealand businesses, and am excited to be joining other finalists across the eleven categories at the awards event later in the year.
What I am proud of is that two of the three finalists in my category are from the tech sector (the other is a former CEO of NZTech). The majority of the remaining categories also have multiple finalists who are tech companies or tech-related businesses. In particular, congratulations to NZTech member Parrot Analytics and FinTechNZ member MYOB who are among the finalists. This highlights to me the impact of the tech sector and more importantly it’s all encompassing support of the business community as a whole.
Just a year ago, NZTech released a landmark research report, Digital Nation New Zealand, From Tech Sector to Digital Nation. The research showed that the tech sector is large and growing. It contributes $6.3b in exports, 8% of GDP, nearly 29,000 companies, employing 5% of the workforce. More importantly the report illustrated how pervasive technology is and its far reaching impact throughout our society.
As a country, we are well connected, yet we could gain so much more if our businesses further exploit technology to support innovation and growth. Technology now touches all of New Zealand and this reinforces the importance of the tech sector to our national productivity and economic growth. Increasingly, tech can be seen as an enabler across all parts of the economy as it helps businesses in all other sectors become more competitive and sustainable.
Now in their twelfth year, the AUT Excellence in Business Support Awards are the only national performance measure for New Zealand business support organisations. Read the full list of finalists here. Winners of the eleven categories and the supreme award will be named at a gala dinner on 4 October.