We know it is hard for health SMBs to grow their businesses while also having to spend valuable time administering their businesses without integrated and cost-effective business support. We know cashflow and compliance management are ongoing operational challenges for SMBs, and they struggle to find enough time to do everything to stay in business.

Given inadequate cashflow can be one of the leading causes of death for new businesses, support in this area is essential – especially as we seek to improve Australia’s rate of productivity through new business models and methods of employment.

This is especially important in the healthcare sector. As the Australian population continues to age, the number of health-focused businesses will continue to grow. These businesses will be increasingly technology-focused, and may require large amounts of start-up capital. Cashflow focus will be incredibly important.

This is a problem that needs solving. Together with the University of Western Sydney, Google, Cisco and the New South Wales Government, PwC is piloting a new approach to public innovation and problem solving to help create better business support for the healthcare sector.

Our “open innovation” model brings together a wide mix of experience and expertise from business, governments, individuals and entrepreneurs to solve structural problems impacting growth and sustainability. The following problem is being put to groups attending our upcoming innovation event at the UWS:

How to grow employment in Western Sydney’s health-sector small-and-medium businesses (SMBs) through better business support.

The Open Innovation event will search for a way to solve this problem, with the winning team earning a 12-week process to work with PwC to strengthen the offering, in order to attract enough demand to get the solution off the ground.

Does this sound like a problem you want to solve? Then consider applying for the Open Innovation event, which takes place at UWS on September 6+7.

Applications close on Friday, 29 August – visit openinnovation.com.au to submit an application and for more information on the event.

Our Open Innovation process has been proven successful in other areas. In 2012, we worked with Transport for New South Wales and other entrants to come up with solutions for the public transport system – multiple public-facing apps were developed during the process. To read more about the 2012 App Hot House, click here.