The top priorities for Kiwi IT leaders in 2022

Access to skills, cybersecurity, and supply chain resilience among the biggest concerns IT business leaders face.

Mastery of technology skills + knowledge.
Metamorworks / Getty Images

Navigating the ongoing impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continued to dominate the top priorities for IT business leaders in New Zealand, according to a new report from Technology Users Association of New Zealand (Tuanz).

Digital business leaders surveyed for the “Aotearoa’s Digital Priorities in 2022” report listed the skills gap, retention of staff, and attracting talent as the biggest technology challenges their organisations will face this year.

Cybersecurity and enabling a secure hybrid workplace remained key priorities. As security threats continued to increase during 2021, digital leaders are looking at how to bolster their defences and become more resilient in terms of cybersecurity.

Mitigating supply chains issues is another key priority for digital leaders as they have faced shortages of tech products and hardware.

New Zealand falls behind in digital performance

The report also shows New Zealand is not keeping pace with the rest of the world when it comes to digital economic performance, said the report.

Drawing on data from the global Network Readiness Index (NRI), the report reveals New Zealand currently ranks No. 42 in the world for overall access to technology, No. 56 on cybersecurity, No. 62 for high tech exports and No. 69 on medium and high-tech manufacturing.

As a result, the country’s overall NRI ranking has dropped from No. 16 place in 2020 to No. 20 in 2021— seven places behind Australia, which dropped just one slot from 2020.

New Zealand needs to bring new skills into the industry to improve these rankings, said Tuanz CEO Craig Young. “While we will always need to bring skills in from offshore, our companies and government also need to be aligned in developing home grown talent, especially in underrepresented groups such as women, Māori and Pasifika,” he said.

On the plus side, New Zealand ranks among the top 10 countries in several categories on the index, including for government online services, governance, regulation quality and inclusion — and retained the number one slot for e-commerce legislation.

There was also significant improvement in medium and high-tech manufacturing — jumping 41 places on the index from 80 to 39.

Network Readiness Index

(NRI) Measure

2020 Ranking

2021

Ranking

+/-

Overall NRI Ranking

16

20

+ 4

Technology Pillar

20

24

+ 4

Access (overall)

16

42

+26

Mobile Tariffs

18

32

+14

Households with internet access

24

36

+12

International internet bandwidth

16

34

+18

Content (overall)

12

14

+2

Mobile apps development

18

20

+2

Future Technologies (overall)

29

31

+3

Investment in emerging technology

19

19

-

Adoption of emerging technologies

18

18

-

Computer software spending

55

45

-10

People Pillar

15

17

+2

Active mobile broadband subscriptions

19

79

+60

Business (overall)

17

21

+4

Firms with a website

17

14

+3

Government promotion of investment in emerging tech

34

34

-

Government online services

10

10

-

Governance Pillar

7

8

+1

Trust (overall)

9

11

+2

Cybersecurity

38

56

+18

Regulation (overall)

16

17

+1

Regulation quality

4

3

-1

ICT regulatory environment

80

39

-41

Ecommerce legislation

1

1

-

Inclusion (overall)

2

4

+2

Rural gap in digital payments

39

38

-1

Impact Pillar

24

26

+2

Economy (overall)

38

44

+6

High tech exports

50

62

+12

Medium and high-tech manufacturing

82

69

-13

Source: “The Network Readiness Index 2021, Shaping the Global Recovery”

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

7 inconvenient truths about the hybrid work trend
Shop Tech Products at Amazon