The financial services industry has fallen behind other sectors in online transactions as a result of a lack of IT investment.
That's according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics' Summary of IT Use and Innovation in Australian Business 2012-13 report.
It reveals that despite the rapid changes in the financial sector, including the development of internet banking, many businesses in the financial and insurance services industries aren't necessarily transacting online.
Data shows the proportion of businesses in the finance industry that ‘received orders via the Internet’ was just 19 per cent in 2012-13.
This trailed the average across sectors of 30 per cent.
This number compared to 52 per cent of businesses in the information media and telecommunications industry, 48 per cent in the manufacturing sector, 50 per cent in wholesale trade and 38 per cent in the retail sector.
Bluedoor executive director, Karen De Angelis, said it was critical that financial services organisations invested more in IT to keep pace with the competition and the development of technology.
"All businesses need to invest in IT to remain competitive and to boost their productivity,” she said.
“As more and more Australians move to mobile devices and transact over the Internet, the financial services sector needs to lift its game and conduct more of its own processes online, including receiving orders over the Internet.”
However, one area of rapid change was the use of social media.
More than a quarter of all businesses had a social media presence (26 per cent) as at 30 June 2013, almost double from (18 per cent) a year earlier.
According to De Angelis, superannuation funds are utilising DST’s Bluedoor platform to introduce innovations in their online platforms, enabling their members to transact online and access information more easily about their superannuation through mobile devices.
“Providers and super funds are better targeting their marketing efforts through online solutions, thereby better meeting their members’ financial needs,” she said.Read more: UPDATED: Westpac re-signs Telstra and Optus for five years
“Over time, we expect to see productivity improve in the financial services sector through greater use of IT and innovative activity."
The ABS report presents key indicators on the incidence of use of IT and innovation in Australian business, as collected by the 2012-13 Business Characteristics Survey.