Overview of ECON1555 Business Data Analytics Assignment:
This assessment task takes the form of a report, which you will prepare as part of a consulting research assignment.
A Consulting Firm in Melbourne has been approached by a client to do a consulting project on the status of Information Technology usage in businesses in Australia. The reason for this is that the client is interested in identifying strengths and areas for improvement in alignment with the Australian Government’s view that businesses need to be data ready and adept at using digital technologies including the internet to succeed in the digital economy. The client wants a ‘high-level’ view focusing on all businesses in Australia, and with an additional focus on SMEs (small and medium enterprises).
You are assigned to do this project and required to submit a short report. The project is to analyse and describe the Australian enterprises’ online presence by using a reliable dataset. Data was collected from the Business Characteristics Survey (BCS).Further details on the background to the
assignment, and scope of the research assignment etc. are provided below in the assessment details section.
ECON1555 Business Data Analytics Assignment details
3.1. Background to the research
The following is background information which summarises why this project is important.
The Australian Government (Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, 2018) emphasise that Australia’s technology future requires Australian businesses to develop capability in several areas including data and digital skills and accessing Australia’s digital infrastructure including Information Technology such as the internet.
Data is considered valuable for businesses because it enables better, more connected services, improved policies and decision making, and the development of new technologies product and services. “Collecting and analysing data is not a new thing, but the tools businesses and consumers use to quickly interact with data from multiple sources are changing rapidly. Seven out of the top 10 companies in the world rely on the data they collect to deliver services and create value.”
All Australia businesses regardless of size and sector they are in need to use data and Information Technology. This is particularly important for SMEs. Data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics indicate that SMEs in Australia accounts for most businesses, business employment and value-added contribution to the economy.
Australia also needs to facilitate the start up and growth of ‘Innovative’ SMEs which are generally characterised as having high growth, possessing innovative ideas, and bringing new ideas to the market through commercialisation. They are generally aware of the latest technology trends, are digitally engaged, use the internet for business purpose, and have knowledge and capital resources.
Data usage and digital engagement also appears to strongly correlate with innovative SMEs. Deloitte in a survey of 500 small businesses in Australia measured their level of digital engagement, such as having a website with business information or the use of digital marketing to attract customer. Small businesses making full use of the internet with high digital marketing to attract customers. Small businesses making full of the internet with high digital engagement enjoy better business outcomes, have better growth prospects, more diversified sources of revenue and a bigger customer base. The report’s conclusion is that Australian small businesses must consider online strategies if they are to navigate the digital disruption of coming years.
3.2. Objectives of the research project
The consulting assignment needs to analyse and describe the current situation with Australian businesses online presence from a reliable data set in a way that the business client can understand and identify from the data key relationships, strengths and areas that need attention. It is important to look at all Australian businesses, but to also treat SMEs as a special case.
3.3. Research questions
The main research questions to be answered are the following:
- What is the current situation for Australian businesses’ online presence, including large businesses and SMEs?
- What is the current situation for Australian SME’s online presence?
- What are the strengths of Australian businesses about online presence for all businesses as well as specifically SMEs?
- What are areas for improvement for Australian businesses about online presence for all businesses as well as specifically for SMEs?
3.4. Analysis of the data set
Analyse the data for all businesses, as well as specifically for SMEs. It is your task to explain your approach to investigate the research questions through the selection of relevant variables from the data set and the application of suitable analytical techniques.
Some advice on the techniques that you may apply to analyse this data set:
- data visualisation using appropriate charts and plots;
- correlational analysis,
- regression analysis such simple linear regression, multiple regression
- test of significance.
Summarise the findings from the analysis of the data set into areas that can be considered strengths and those that require improvement. Highlight general findings for all businesses, as well as for SMEs.
3.6. Additional research required
Based on your analysis, identify possible areas for further research or additional data that may provide additional insight. Note: these could be quantitative or qualitative.
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