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Workplace Policy

Pure Business Project Frequently Asked Questions

Is this project about reducing costs of complying with regulations?
Yes - and also about helping SMEs thrive. That includes making compliance easier, help with understanding regulations, and determining whether regulations are working or need changing.

How will this project help small businesses?
The Project aims to work out ways to ensure regulations help, not hinder enterprise. It looks at how government agencies can work with and for enterprises, and will develop tools you can use to better manage the regulations
that affect you.

Will it mean less paper work – and particularly less answering the same questions lots of times?
Government agencies including Department of Labour, ACC, IRD, Ministry for Economic Development, NZ Trade and Enterprise, Statistics NZ and Ministry for the Environment are all working together on this, to see things from the SME point of view. We’ll be looking at paperwork and repetition issues very closely, with the aim of cutting back.

Will this lead to government forms that are easier to understand?
If forms aren’t understandable, they’re failing to do what they’re meant to. The Project will look at what life is actually like for SMEs, so that information needs of SMEs can be identified and used to develop better ways of collecting information for both parties.

Can I get directly involved in this project?
Yes. We’re looking for business people now to work with us in small groups that explore your business and the impact of regulations – that takes about three hours. Later this year we’ll be looking for further business involvement in face-toface discussions. If you’re interested contact us via the details below.

Why would a project like this make any difference at all?
It’s different from anything government agencies have done before. It brings together businesses and the range of regulatory agencies you deal with, to look at what really happens in practice. It involves you in the design and conduct of research and change practices. Getting the whole or government together means we look at all impacts, not just one bit at a time. While this is different for government, it’s a tested technique here and overseas - Formway Furniture used this interactive exploratory process to develop their award-winning Life Chair. The size of New Zealand means there are lots of connections and fewer levels the Project has to work over. It’s a first – involving enterprises in the design and conduct of research and change practices.

Why do it now?
SMEs want changes to reduce compliance burdens, government wants to help, and we have the skills available now. Government is taking business seriously and regulations are not going away. SMEs are important to the economy, and regulations and government agencies should help, not hinder.

When will we start seeing regulatory change?
We can’t be specific yet, but we estimate that developing and testing possible regulatory solutions will take around 12-18 months. Some proposed legislative changes may be initiated earlier than December 2005 if the testing process suggests that urgent change is critical.

What government agencies are involved?
Currently there are seven agencies working on the project: Department of Labour, ACC, IRD, Ministry for Economic Development and NZ Trade and Enterprise, Statistics NZ, and Ministry for the Environment.

Other agencies including Ministry for Agriculture and Womens Affairs are also helping. The Project is beginning to work with individual small businesses and ICANZ. There’ll be much more involvement over the coming months, so the Project becomes jointly owned and run with New Zealand enterprises.