Increasing use of online government services

  • Chris Tremain
  • Steven Joyce
Internal Affairs Economic Development

New online Government services are proving popular with Kiwi families and businesses, Economic Development Minister Steven Joyce and Internal Affairs Minister Chris Tremain say.

As part of an update on progress on the Better Public Services programme, the Government today released the latest results for its planned one-stop online shop for businesses (Result 9) and for New Zealanders to complete transactions with Government easily online (Result 10).

Result 9: NZ businesses have a one-stop online shop for all government advice and support

  • Target: Business costs from dealing with government will reduce by 25  per cent by 2017, through a year-on-year reduction in effort required to work with agencies.
  • Target: Government services to business will have similar key performance ratings as leading private sector firms by July 2017, and businesses will be able to contribute to this through an online feedback system from July 2013.

Achievements include:

  • The free ONECheck online search tool at has brought together a company’s name, domain and trademark, reducing the effort required to find the information.
  • The first phase of the roll-out of the Trade Single Window for Customs and the Ministry for Primary Industries began in April 2013. This will allow businesses to provide border information once to NZ border agencies.
  • Registered businesses can now access information and complete their compliance obligations online and have easier access to online information held on each company by the Companies Office. 
  • The Intellectual Property Office of New Zealand has completed moves to manage patents online, meaning tasks that once took days to compete can now be done instantly.

Result 10: New Zealanders can complete their transactions with government easily in a digital environment

  • Target: An average of 70 per cent of New Zealanders’ most common transactions with government will be completed in a digital environment by 2017 – up from 29.9 per cent from baseline.

This target is measured through 10 key government services provided online including applying for a passport, filing an individual tax return, applying for Ministry of Social Development financial assistance, paying for vehicle licenses and applying for overseas visas.

Achievements include:

  • 35 per cent of adult passports were renewed online in the year to March 2013. This means we are halfway to the 70 per cent target within six months of the online service being launched.
  • 115,000 businesses filed 350,000 GST returns online through the ‘myIR’ service in the nine months to May 2013 (18 per cent of GST returns).
  • 93 per cent of individual tax returns were filed online in the March quarter – up from 75 per cent when the Better Public Services targets were set.
  • 68 per cent of people applying for financial assistance from the Social Development Ministry are now doing that online – up from 48 per cent when the targets were set.

Mr Joyce says 90 per cent of firms have contact with Government agencies at least once a year.

“Giving them and New Zealand families the option to do more business with Government online will make things quicker and easier for them, and ultimately benefit both our economy and society,” Mr Joyce says.

“At the same time, the Government is conscious of the need to support people who don’t have internet access, by ensuring Government services are accessible to everyone.”

“All these results are encouraging with the use of the 10 main Government online services increasing from 29 per cent in June last year to 41 per cent in March,” Mr Tremain says.

“Good progress is being made but there is still more work to do to ensure we integrate more Government services online. Kiwis expect to be able to access more and more services from devices such as smart phones and iPads.”