The usage of information and communication technologies is an extremely important part of contemporary business conduct. The survey showed that 96% of enterprises used computers with internet access in their daily work. The internet became a necessity for efficient business conduct, so 68% of enterprises had their own website.
The internet and other network technologies allow for connectivity between sectors within an enterprise and the integration of business processes that contribute to more efficient business conduct. The type and speed of data transfer allow for better quality of business conduct. The availability and affirmation of mobile devices caused a change in the trend of internet access. There were 96% of enterprises that used a fixed broadband connection (DSL, cable, leased line), while mobile internet access was used by 87% of enterprises.
The usage of the internet caused changes in the way business is conducted by enabling the integration of business processes at a higher level. The internet connection speed is becoming an important factor in business conduct. The increasing availability of broadband internet boosts data transfer speed. Data transfer speed of more than 100 Mbps is used by 29% of enterprises.
The integration of business processes and communication between business entities via the internet allow for a more efficient offer of goods and services and their purchase and sale on the market. The volume of e-commerce compared to conventional commerce was still rather low and barely 15% of sales were conducted via the internet.
In the Republic of Croatia, the usage of computing resources via cloud computing services is still developing; it is used by 39% of enterprises. The representation structure by enterprise size was evenly distributed between small, medium-sized and large enterprises, while graphic presentation shows that its usage was predominant in business activities as well as in information and communication sectors.
The classification by types of services shows that enterprises most often used cloud computing for e-mail processing, while data storage, database hosting services, antivirus protection as well as the usage of office and accounting software were somewhat less represented.
We also examined whether enterprises had IT specialists employed. IT specialists include staff whose main job is to design, maintain, develop, manage and support information systems in the enterprise. There were 19% of enterprises who stated they had IT specialists employed. In this connection, 7% of enterprises tried to employ new IT specialists last year, but as many as 2/3 of them had problems finding employees. The most common issues were a low number of applicants and lack of relevant IT qualifications among candidates.
For the first time, the use of the Internet of Things systems in enterprises was explored. There were 23% of enterprises that stated that they use some of the Internet of Things systems. The most common application is recorded in large companies, and almost half of them use some of the systems. The most commonly used systems are those for optimising energy consumption in the enterprise (smart lighting fixtures, thermostats and meters) and security systems (alarm devices, security cameras, burglar or fire protection systems).
We also researched another new technology, artificial intelligence (AI), and its application in enterprise business processes. Only 8% of companies said they use some of the artificial intelligence technologies. The application is most common in large companies, and almost a quarter of them use some of the technologies. The most commonly used technologies are the application of software robots for automation of business processes and decision making, analysis of a written text and data analysis by machine learning.
Purpose of the statistical survey
The data shown in this First Release are estimates obtained through the IKT-POD Survey. This is an annual survey on the usage of information and communication technologies (ICT) and provides information on computer usage, usage of the internet, electronic commerce and other ICTs in enterprises. The data are an important source for conducting policies in the field of information society in the Republic of Croatia and in the European Union.
The IKT-POD Survey was conducted in 2021 according to Eurostat guidelines and on the basis of the Official Statistics Act (NN, No 25/20). Harmonised surveys were conducted in all EU Member States, and, therefore, the data are internationally comparable. The international data are available on the following website address: Digital economy and society https://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/statistics-explained/index.php/Digital_economy_and_society.
Concepts and definitions used in the Survey are in line with the EU Methodology for Statistics on the Information Society, 2021, especially with Regulation (EU) No. 2019/2152 of the European Parliament and of the Council on European business statistics.
The observation units are enterprises registered on the territory of the Republic of Croatia for performing the following activities according to the NACE classification:
C - Manufacturing
D, E - Electricity, gas and water supply
F - Construction
G - Wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles
H - Transport and storage
I - Accommodation and food service activities
J - Information and communications activities
L - Real estate activities
M - Professional, scientific and technical activities
N - Administrative and support service activities
S - Other service activities (group 95.1)
The enterprises were also classified according to the number of persons employed:
- small enterprises (employing 10 – 49 persons)
- medium-sized enterprises (employing 50 – 249 persons)
- large enterprises (employing 250 or more persons).
Sampling frame and size
The basis for the sampling frame was the Statistical Business Register of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics. The sample consisted of 4 500 enterprises.
Data collection method
The data were collected via the internet by using the online questionnaire. The reference period for the main variables was the second quarter of 2021. For the questions concerning internet sales, the reference period was 2020.
Out of the whole population of enterprises (12 633), there were 4 500 units taken into the sample. Out of the total sample size (4 500 units), 4 396 units were eligible and 2 549 enterprises took part in the survey. It means that the response rate was 57% and the eligibility rate was 98%. The non-response rate was 43%.
RIM weighting procedure (iterative proportional fitting – IPF) was used for the grossing-up. The extrapolation weight was calculated for each participant of the Survey, while the calculation method included the NACE category, number of employees and the total turnover of an enterprise.
The source of information on these variables was the Statistical Business Register of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics. The calculated weights enabled the calculation of the data for the whole population of enterprises.
Total data were published for enterprises employing ten or more persons. The Eurostat publishes data of the EU countries for enterprises employing ten or more persons, which enables comparability of the data between the Republic of Croatia and other EU countries.
Definitions end explanations
Broadband technologies are technologies or connections that enable rapid transmission of data, especially films, games and video -conferences via an internet network (e.g. DSL, cable connection, optical connection, leased lines, mobile internet).
ICT (Information and Communication Technology) are software and hardware used for data communication (e.g. computer, fax, the internet, fixed mobile phone).
E-commerce means transactions conducted over internet protocol-based networks and over other computer-mediated networks. Goods and services are ordered via those networks, but the payment and the ultimate delivery of the goods or services may be conducted online or offline. Orders received via telephone, facsimile, or manually typed e-mails are not counted as electronic commerce.
EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) is used for the electronic exchange of data, documents and orders inside an enterprise and between enterprises. Data interchange flows automatically between the computer systems of partners. Standard and encrypted forms are used.
The internet refers to networks of the following internet protocols: www, extranet via the internet, EDI via the internet, internet-ready mobile phones.
Cloud computing is a technology that enables data storage and data sharing over the internet. Data are stored on servers of a service provider, who also provides connectivity, data storing and data sharing services.
Website is a location on the World Wide Web identified by a web address. Collection of web files on a particular subject includes a beginning file called the home page. Information is encoded in specific languages (HyperText Mark-up Language (HTML), XML, Java) readable over a web browser such as Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera, or Microsoft's Internet Explorer.
Artificial intelligence refers to systems that use technologies such as text handling, computer vision, speech recognition, natural language creation, machine learning or data analysis by machine learning in order to collect and use data to predict, recommend or determine the best activity to achieve specific goals. Artificial intelligence systems are divided into software (e.g., chatbots and business virtual assistants, face recognition systems, machine translators, machine learning-based analytical tools) and those embedded in some devices (e.g., autonomous robots to automate warehouse operations or production, autonomous drones for production control or package handling).
Internet-of-Things implies a system of interconnected computer devices, mechanical and digital machines, and objects that can communicate and transmit data via a network without the need for human access and human interaction. Objects in such a system can be set up via the internet, programmed to perform tasks, and can also exchange data with each other.
|CRM||Customer Relationship Management software|
|DSL||digital subscriber line|
|ERP||Enterprise Resource Planning software|
|Eurostat||Statistical Office of the European Communities|
|Gbps||gigabit per second|
|Mbps||megabit per second|
|NACE||Statistical Classification of Economic Activities in the European Union|
|NN||Narodne novine, official gazette of the Republic of Croatia|
The survey whose data is published in this release has been conducted with the financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of the Croatian Bureau of Statistics and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.
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