Unlocking New Zealand’s digital potential: The economic opportunities of digital transformation and Google’s contribution
Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, New Zealand’s economy had been facing headwinds from low labour productivity growth amidst rising labour costs and an ageing workforce. While the country has weathered the pandemic well, the crisis has exposed the over-reliance of the economy on low-productivity, low-value exports. As New Zealand rebuilds for the post-pandemic future, digital transformation can no longer be a mere aspiration. It has become an imperative.
Digital adoption can also support higher incomes, as well as higher-quality and safer jobs for Kiwis. By freeing up more time for workers to perform higher value-add tasks, technologies can allow workers to command higher wages in the labour market. Surveys have shown that employees also experience greater job satisfaction by shifting away from mundane and routine tasks to focus more on meaningful and higher-order work requiring human ingenuity.
The report finds that, if leveraged fully in the economy by 2030, digital technologies could create an annual economic value of NZ$46.6 billion – or the combined GDP supported by Canterbury and Hawke’s Bay. To fully capture the digital opportunity, the report has identified three main pillars of action the country could take. This includes supporting technology adoption in key industries, digitally upskilling the current workforce and future talent, as well as promoting digital export opportunities. Across these three pillars of action, Google has made significant contributions in advancing New Zealand’s digital transformation journey through its programmes, products and services.