The past few years have seen the landscape shift dramatically for every business around the world and at home – and the impacts haven’t been felt equally. 2degrees’ annual research, the Shaping Business Study, dives into how Kiwi businesses are faring, and in 2022 it revealed a very different picture for businesses of different sizes.
We worked alongside the 2degrees team and research partner Perceptive to develop this year’s research, taking a pulse of how employing business leaders are navigating a business landscape filled with price increases, changing regulation and a shortage of skilled labour. The results were mixed, to put it lightly.
Shaping Business revealed a divide between the experiences of smaller and larger businesses. While there were challenges across the board, with 90% of business leaders reporting rising costs, over half of large businesses were feeling more optimistic than they were in 2021, a figure which dropped to just 31 per cent of small businesses. Large businesses were also more likely to be anticipating revenue growth in the next year than their smaller counterparts.
2degrees Chief Business Officer Andrew Fairgray attributed much of the strain on businesses to struggles with labour. “Attracting and retaining talent is crucial in the current business environment. We’ve heard from many of our own customers that it’s all about people, people, people and the research backs this up.”
“This year the report highlighted labour shortages as the number one challenge for 53% of businesses. Normally, it’s cash flow, but this year we see significant pressure on wages and retaining good people.”
In 2022, we live in a flexible world of work and the research has showed that businesses which move with the times are seeing dividends. Businesses which had changed their ways of working were more likely to report increased productivity and ability to innovate.
The Shaping Business Study provided a valuable perspective on the current challenges faced by New Zealand businesses and we secured a range of interviews including with the NZ Herald, RNZ, Newstalk ZB in which Andrew shared his insights and 2degrees experience of working with Kiwi businesses every day.
The Shaping Business Study has been used beyond the media, too, with the findings shared with the New Zealand Chambers of Commerce, informing its work with members to build business resilience and help them take on economic challenges.
You can read the full Shaping Business Study here.