20 November 2017

Bouris taskforce to help digitise small business


Joint media release with
The Hon Michael McCormack MP
Minister for Small Business
The Hon Craig Laundy MP
Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science

The Turnbull Government has established a Small Business Digital Taskforce, to be headed by one of Australia’s most successful entrepreneurs, Mark Bouris AM, to ensure more Australian small businesses can thrive in an increasingly digital economy.

The taskforce will talk to small business owners around the country about the benefits of adopting digital technologies to help their businesses operate more efficiently, giving them more time to grow their business.

Joining Mr Bouris on the taskforce will be Mr Spiro Pappas, Ms Pip Marlow, Ms Su McCluskey, Mr Gerd Schenkel, Mr David Coleman MP and the Hon Craig Laundy MP, Assistant Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science.

“I was thrilled that Mark has taken up our invitation to chair the taskforce and to be able to say to him: You’re Hired! He is the right man for the job,” Treasurer Scott Morrison said.

“If we empower small businesses to digitise and streamline their operations, the economy benefits through an increase in productivity and through job creation. Everyone wins.”

“Small business is at the heart of the Australian economy – 3.2 million small businesses employ around 50 per cent of Australia’s workforce, or around 5.6 million Australians. But many are not taking advantage of the opportunities that the digital economy offers.”

Mark Bouris said: “When a business begins to digitise and use digital tools, it opens up new opportunities to grow, diversify revenue streams, find talent, access finance, work smarter and enhance the value of the business when it is time to sell. If you’re not going digital, you should be.”

Deloitte research has found that small businesses with advanced levels of digital engagement are 1.5 times more likely to be growing revenue, 8 times more likely to be creating jobs and 14 times more likely to be innovating.

The Taskforce will conduct a series of meetings, workshops and hackathons with businesses over the coming months to explore impediments for business in engaging with digital technologies and how these impediments might be addressed.

“Adopting digital practices makes small businesses more competitive and helps them take advantage of new opportunities,” Minister McCormack said.

“This Government backs small businesses to help them thrive, realise their full potential and create more local jobs.”

“We want more small businesses to participate and shape Australia’s digital economy and working with businesses on solutions that will help them is critical – we want to hear ideas from across the country, so get involved,” said Assistant Minister Laundy.

The Taskforce will report their findings to the Government by 28 February 2018.

To learn more about how business can get involved - including information on events and the taskforce’s work, visit the Small Business Digital Taskforce or subscribe at smallbusinesstaskforce@industry.gov.au.

Attachment - Member Biographies [PDF 356KB]

Attachment - Terms of Reference [PDF 189KB]