Research: Digital Transformation Seen As Critical By 4 in 5 Execs

Embracing Digital Technology   MIT Sloan Management Review

If you need a little boost heading into the weekend (a long weekend for Canadians, who do Thanksgiving in October), worth a read is a new report on Digital Transformation by MIT’s Sloan School of Management, and Capgemini Consulting.

The research suggests that for 78% of respondents, achieving digital transformation will become critical to their organizations within the next two years. But almost 2/3 of respondents said the pace of technology change in their organization was too slow, and said the biggest obstacle to digital transformation was “lack of urgency.”

Digital transformation is defined by the researchers as “the use of new digital technologies (social media, mobile, analytics or embedded devices) to enable major business improvements (such as enhancing customer experience, streamlining operations or creating new business models.)”

The study encompasses that broad spectrum, but certainly issues having to do with customer experience, operations and business models touch digital display – particularly for companies that work directly with consumers or need to effectively communicate with staff.

Only 38% of respondents said that digital transformation was a permanent fixture on their CEO’s agenda. Where CEOs have shared their vision for digital transformation, 93% of employees feel that it is the right thing for the organization. But, a mere 36% of CEOs have shared such a vision.

The study says “companies now face a digital imperative: adopt new technologies effectively or face competitive obsolescence. While there is consensus on the importance of adopting digital technology, most employees find the process complex and slow. Many say their leaders lack urgency and fail to share a vision for how technology can change the business. Companies that succeed tend to have leaders who share their vision and define a road map, create cross-organizational authority for adoption and reward employees for working towards it.”

Some of the most interesting stuff deals with the barriers, ones people see in this space all the time:

  • Defining an agenda;
  • Developing a vision and direction;
  • Lack of urgency;
  • Attitudes of older leaders who don’t “get” digital;
  • Fear of investing too early in technology;
  • Politics;
  • And innovation fatigue.

 MITCapgemini-Urgency-of-Digital-Transformation-Oct2013

 

 

Dave Haynes

Dave Haynes

Editor/Founder at Sixteen:Nine
Dave Haynes is the founder and editor of Sixteen:Nine, an online publication that has followed the digital signage industry for more than 13 years. Dave does strategic advisory consulting work for many end-users and vendors, and also writes for many of them. He's based near Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Dave Haynes

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