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8167.0 - Selected Characteristics of Australian Business, 2009-10 Quality Declaration 
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/09/2011   
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BUSINESS PERFORMANCE


Business performance assessment

All businesses were provided with a list of business performance measures and asked to indicate the extent to which they focussed on these measures when assessing overall business performance during the year ended 30 June 2010. Businesses were asked to select one extent of focus for each type of measure.

Business performance assessment, by extent of focus, by type of measure(a)(b)(c), 2009 - 10

Extent of focus
Not at all
A small extent
A moderate extent
A major extent
%
%
%
%

Type of measure
Financial measures (e.g. profits, sales growth, returns on investments)
16.7
19.2
30.0
34.2
Cost (e.g. budget, cost per unit of output, inventory cost)
20.1
20.4
31.9
27.8
Operational (e.g. asset utilisation, on - time delivery)
28.4
21.5
29.5
20.8
Quality (e.g. customer satisfaction, defect rates)
17.7
15.4
28.6
38.6
Innovation (e.g. process innovation, new value added products)
33.6
26.9
25.3
14.5
Human resources (e.g. job satisfaction, skills development)
30.3
28.5
28.5
12.7
Environment (e.g. recycling programs, sustainability considerations, carbon footprint analysis)
36.6
32.2
22.6
8.7

(a) Proportions are of all businesses.
(b) Businesses were asked to indicate to what extent the business focused on the listed measures when assessing performance.
(c) The sum of component items for each measure may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses, please refer to Explanatory Notes 26 and 27 and the Quality Declaration.


When assessing business performance, the measure most focused on to a major extent was quality (39%), followed by financial measures (34%). Overall, 37% of businesses did not focus on environmental measures at all.

Across all types of measures, the incidence of businesses focusing on a measure to a major extent increased for each successive employment size range.

Businesses in Manufacturing and Accommodation and food services were most likely to focus on quality measures to a major extent (both 46%), with businesses in Electricity, gas, water and waste services twice as likely to focus on environmental measures to a major extent (40%).

Innovation-active businesses were more likely to focus on financial measures to a major extent (46%), compared to non innovation-active businesses (25%).


Changes in business performance and activities

Businesses were provided with a list of performance indicators and activities and were asked to self-assess whether any of these had decreased, stayed the same, or increased compared to the previous year; an additional option of not applicable was also provided. Businesses were asked to select one response for each performance indicator of activity.

Changes in business performance and activities, compared to previous year(a)(b)(c), 2009 - 10

Decreased
Stayed the same
Increased
Not applicable
%
%
%
%

Performance measures and activities
Income from sales of goods or services
32.3
19.1
39.6
9.3
Range of products or services offered
5.7
61.5
18.2
14.8
Profitability
35.2
27.9
28.6
8.6
Productivity
16.3
44.4
24.6
14.9
Total number of jobs or positions
14.2
57.0
15.9
13.1
Export markets targeted
1.6
8.2
1.1
89.0
Contracting our work/activities or outsourcing
5.3
21.8
7.4
65.7
Structured/formal training for employees(d)
3.7
37.4
11.3
47.8
Expenditure on Information Technology (IT)
6.2
38.9
18.5
36.7
Social contributions(e)
5.7
37.6
8.9
48.0

(a) Proportions are of all businesses.
(b) Businesses were asked to indicate if there had been a change in any of the items listed compared to the previous year. No attempt was made to cross check this self-assessment with other information.
(c) The sum of all component items for each measure may not equal 100% due to rounding and/or provision of multiple responses, please refer to Explanatory Notes 26 and 27 and the Quality Declaration.
(d) Includes attendance at external training, workshops and seminars.
(e) Examples include specific community enhancement projects, charity contributions or support.


Just under 40% of businesses indicated an increase in income from sales of goods or services. By employment size, this ranged from 35% for businesses with 0-4 persons employed, to 56% for businesses with 200 or more persons employed. A decrease in profitability was experienced by 35% of businesses.

Businesses in Electricity, gas, water and waste services were most likely to indicate an increase in income from sales of goods or services (55%). Conversely, 40% of businesses in Administrative and support services indicated a decrease in income from sales of goods or services.

Over a third of innovation-active businesses (35%) increased their productivity compared to the previous year, opposed to just 16% of non innovation-active businesses.


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