8129.0 - Business Use of Information Technology, 2011-12 Quality Declaration 
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 22/08/2013   
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22 August 2013
Embargoed: 11.30 am Canberra Time

Working from home is a growing option for internet savvy businesses

More micro businesses are using the internet to let people work from home or other locations, according to figures released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) today.

"More than a third of micro businesses now use the internet to enable staff to work from home," said Andrew Puljic, ABS Director of the Innovation and Technology Statistics Branch. "That's an eight percentage point increase in two years."

"For larger businesses, more than three quarters have the facility for staff to use the internet to work from home."

One in five Australian businesses had a social media presence as at 30 June 2012.

"Just over half, or 52 percent of large businesses use social media, but when you get to micro business that drops to only 13 percent," said Mr Puljic.

"Businesses in the Arts and recreation services industry were the biggest users of social media, with nearly half having a presence on social media, followed by the Information media and telecommunications industry."

Four in five Australian businesses with internet access use it for financial activities including online banking, invoicing and payments, however not all businesses with internet access have a website or other web presence. Nearly two thirds of these businesses said they did not see the need to have a website, and one quarter reported they lacked the technical expertise to set one up.

Further information is available in Business Use of Information Technology (cat. no. 8129.0) available for free download at www.abs.gov.au

Media notes:
    • The ABS classifies micro businesses as businesses with 0-4 employees and large businesses as businesses with 200 or more employees.
    • Social media presence includes web and mobile-based technologies which are used to turn communication into interactive dialogue among organisations, communities and individuals. These include: blogs and micro-blogs such as Twitter; content communities such as YouTube; and social networking sites such as Facebook.
    • Web presence includes a website, home page or, in the case of a presence on another entity's website, it is included providing the business has substantial control over the content. Web presence excludes online listings or directories such as the Yellow or White Pages.
    • When reporting ABS data, the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or ABS) must be attributed as the source.