Microsoft has today published its global and Irish Digital Transformation research findings. A Harvard Business Review report finds that while 80% of business leaders think their industry will be positively disrupted by Digital Transformation within the next three years, fewer than half have a digital strategy in place.
In addition, findings from Amarach Research, commissioned by Microsoft Ireland into 300 Irish organisations reveals that many firms struggle with what it means to be a digital business. It found that 80% of Irish organisations overestimate their digital readiness, with nearly half struggling to keep up with customers.
Forty eight percent (48%) worry about other competitors digitally transforming before them or new entrants entering their sector using technology to gain competitive advantage.
While 60% of Irish organisations saw themselves as digital disruptors, half worried about how long their current business models would last, believing they would be disrupted in two years.
While over half (51%) have digital transformation strategies in place, a quarter are unsure as to what steps to take. Forty one per cent of Irish organisations highlight internal issues ranging from lack of the right skills to slow decision making by senior staff on implementation as major obstacles to digital transformation.
Less than half (49%) understand Digital Transformation as leveraging technology to help them evolve quickly and a further 30% of organisations admitted that they did not know which technology to adopt to help them digitally transform.
Overall, 65% of organisations said empowering employees was a priority. Digitally savvy employees in their 20’s and 30’s are now seen vital to successful Digital Transformation. The report shows that 31% of companies had stepped up their recruitment activities to attract these staff and 74% of digitally savvy staff felt they had made a major contribution to enabling the organisation to digitally transform.
Microsoft believe Irish organisations could tap into a $100 trillion market through successful Digital Transformation of their business models by 2020, following global and Irish research. However, they warn that Irish businesses must successfully transform their business model in the next two years or risk losing out.
"It is time to transform or be transformed,” says Aisling Curtis, SMSP Director, Microsoft Ireland. "Disruption is inevitable, but the opportunities are enormous for Irish businesses willing to successfully evolve. Successful Digital Transformation is multidimensional, leveraging the availability of the Cloud, IoT, advanced analytics, mixed reality and artificial intelligence. Microsoft is helping businesses globally and in Ireland make that transition across employees, customers, operations and products. We understand companies’ needs for innovation, speed to market, and the importance of continually transforming and re-evaluating how business is done."