Data Collection

BOS Data Collection 2015

BOS Data Collection 2015 en-NZ



Reference period

The survey was posted out in August 2015. We collected information for the latest financial year for which the business had data available at the time they completed the questionnaire.

Consistency with other periods

The Business Operations Survey is a modular survey that contains a repeating business operations module, an alternating information and communications technology (ICT) or innovation module, and a contracted module. The modular structure means the content changes each year as results are released.

Statistics NZ works with other organisations to develop the mix of content for this survey.

Table 1 - Business Operations Survey: Module Contents

|--------|------------|----|-----|-----| |Year|Module A | Module B | Module C | Module D| |2005| Business operations| Innovation| Business practices| N/A| |2006| Business operations| ICT | Employment practices| N/A| |2007| Business operations | Innovation | International engagement | N/A| |2008| Business operations| ICT | Business strategy and skills | N/A| |2009| Business operations | Innovation | Business practices | N/A| |2010| Business operations| ICT | Price and wage setting | Financing| |2011| Business operations| Innovation | International engagement | N/A| |2012| Business operations | ICT |Impact of regulation | N/A| |2013 | Business operations| Innovation | Business practices | Skill needs and recruitment | |2014 | Business operations | ICT |Skills acquisition | Finance| |2015| Business operations | Innovation| International engagement |N/A| Note: ICT – information and communication technology; N/A – not applicable.

In addition, each module in the survey has its own specific objectives. The modules included in the Business Operations Survey 2015 and their objectives are listed below.

Module A: Business operations

Provides a longitudinal series of information about business performance. This will help development of models that investigate causal relationships. As well as traditional measures of performance such as turnover and profitability, there is also a need to collect information on such areas as export intensity. The purpose of collecting information is to analyse relationships between the environment in which a business operates and the results it achieves.

Module B: Innovation

Module B alternates between innovation (in odd years) and information and communication technology (ICT) (in even years). The objective of the innovation module is to provide information on the characteristics of innovation in New Zealand's private-sector businesses. This information will allow policies to be developed to facilitate innovation, and understand the dynamics of innovative businesses.

The innovation module runs every two years, and replaced Statistics NZ's former Innovation Survey, last run in 2003. The module was designed in accordance with OECD guidelines to develop an understanding of the contribution of all aspects of innovation to the New Zealand economy by measuring:

• levels of business innovation

• how and why businesses collaborate with other businesses and institutions to innovate

• factors affecting the ability of businesses to innovate

• outcomes of innovation for businesses, including its effect on exports.

Module C: International engagement

We redesigned the international engagement module for 2015. We broadened it to include other forms of interactions between New Zealand and the rest of the world.

This module partly covers data previously collected in 2007 and 2011, regarding the characteristics and strategies towards international engagement undertaken by New Zealand businesses. In these previous international engagement models, income generation and production were primary types of engagement examined. However, the focus in 2015 is broader.

In 2015, the module now also collects information on practices and behaviours associated with current, past, or future international engagement that may affect a business's performance. This module has topics that measure:

• overseas sales of goods and services

• workforce and/or offices overseas

• use of goods and services sourced overseas

• assistance with international engagement the business received.

Data presentation

In 2015, we started presenting data in Infoshare.
Previously, we presented data in NZ.Stat.

The results are given as rounded counts of businesses, to provide greater transparency of the data. These tables show data available back to 2007, to allow easier time-series comparison.

The data in Infoshare is the most up-to-date and correct, and supersedes any previously published data.

Sampling Procedure

Sample selection

The sample includes an oversample of Māori authorities. Responses from Māori authorities are used to help Statistics NZ and other agencies learn what makes a business a Māori business. We oversampled to boost insights for Tatauranga Umanga Māori 2015 a report that provides statistics on a subset of Māori businesses that contribute to our country’s economy. As the sample for the Business Operations Survey is a random sample survey, the information gathered from these Māori authorities is only included if the same businesses are selected through the random selection process.

Table 2 presents the sample errors for the business size and industry groups in the survey.

Table 2 - Business Operations Survey: 2015 sample errors by size and industry

Business size or industry category Sampling error (percentage)
Business size
6–19 employees 0.5
20–49 employees 1.9
50–99 employees 7.9
100+ employees 8.5
Agriculture, forestry & fishing 1.8
Mining 2.4
Manufacturing 1.3
Electricity, gas, water & waste services 2.3
Construction 2.1
Wholesale trade 2.3
Retail trade 2.5
Accommodation & food services 3.0
Transport, postal & warehousing 2.4
Information media & telecommunications 2.7
Financial & insurance services 1.8
Rental, hiring & real estate services 3.5
Professional, scientific & technical services 2.0
Administrative & support services 2.1
Education & training 2.9
Health care & social assistance 1.7
Arts & recreation services 3.4
Other services 3.2
Overall 0.7

How to use the sampling errors

Sampling errors can be measured. They quantify the variability that occurs by chance because a sample rather than an entire population is surveyed.

For example, if the estimated number of businesses in the construction industry is 4,371 with a sampling error of 2.1 percent means there would be a 95 percent chance the true number of businesses in the construction industry lies between 4,279 and 4,463 businesses.

The sampling errors detailed in table 2 show the sample errors for the count estimates published in Infoshare. We can provide sample errors for percentages presented in the summary tables (e.g. percentage results) on request. We can also provide sample errors for specific results if requested.

Response Rate

The Business Operations Survey is a sample survey. For the 2015 survey, we selected a sample of 7,571 from a total population of 39,003 businesses.

The response rate reached our target of 80 percent.


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