The term ‘startup’ is commonly associated with California’s Silicon Valley. However, with many countries including Australia fostering a growing number of entrepreneurs we can quickly begin to see a new era of innovation within local markets.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics recorded that 2 of our 5 businesses were offering innovative services in the local market. Additionally, in June 2018, the unemployment rate was at its lowest in the past 5 years at just 5.4%, a decline of 0.2% from June the previous year.
The Australian government has been actively seeking to reduce barriers and encourage innovative businesses to flourish. This is further evident by providing startup investors with extra tax incentives to boost entrepreneurial ventures and drive innovation across the nation.
Christopher Pyne, Industry, Innovation and Science Minister of Australia has said “The National Innovation and Science Agenda will transform Australia’s economy and will drive prosperity and competitiveness. The country’s future skills base would be shored up through a $99 million investment in programmes to boost digital literacy and skills in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) amongst young Australians.“
The Australian government have also introduced ways to increase the participation of girls and women with a background in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) and entrepreneurship education and careers, and increase the number of women in senior leadership and decision making positions.
“The Agenda will also commit, $13 million to increasing opportunities for women in research, STEM industries, startups and entrepreneurial firms. The release of the Agenda is just the beginning. The next step will be a national discussion around this new way of thinking and doing, and the importance of innovation and science to our future,” Mr Pyne said.
The picture painted here is that both the private and public sectors are prioritising technological innovation. Businesses are faster to adopt new technology to assist with operational automation. This can be can be seen across all industries. Salesforce and Xero are examples of sales and accounting startups that have grown to become publicly-listed companies, both playing pivotal roles in the automation of sales and accounting for SMBs.
One of the many drivers for increased demand for technological innovation is that Australian consumers are spending more than ever before. Australia alone recorded an all-time high of 256 billion dollars spent in the first quarter of 2018, up almost 20 billion since July 2015. This comes as no surprise as to why both government bodies and private corporations are increasing automation efforts in manufacturing, sales and marketing.
It is important to acknowledge that consumers are placing a huge emphasis on their health, time and social and professional lifestyles. The key part to play for local SMBs is to accurately identify customer pain points and leverage innovative technologies to meet each customer’s needs.
Huy Hoang, Founder and Managing Director of Simply Maid, a national house cleaning company in Australia has said “We believe that residents are very eager to fast adopt new innovative technologies and services or risk falling behind to the ones that do. They are willing to spend in order to get ahead and live lifestyles catered to them, not the other way around. We understand our market well which is why we’ve positioned our cleaning services to directly meet our customers’ busy schedules and lifestyles.“
“Our philosophy at Simply Maid is simple. We invest heavily in innovative technologies designed to identify and cater to meet the deepest needs of our customer base. This is what has allowed us to scale to become a national Australian cleaning brand. We’ve heavily integrated smart automation tools such as Front and Zapier to streamline our business operations. This has allowed us to scale quickly and towards establishing ourselves as a nationally recognisable brand. To meet local demand, we now have cleaning teams in Melbourne, Brisbane, Gold Coast, Perth, Adelaide and Canberra. We believe Australia will continue to see heightened demand for innovative local services in the many years to come. Simply Maid will be here to meet that demand,” said Mr Hoang.
Mr Hoang has encouraged startup companies to embrace the new age of digital technology for the development of innovative services. He has pointed out that businesses should actively seek out business automation strategies to adapt to fast-evolving customer demands. —