Study Reveals Australian Companies Gearing Up for Digital Disruption

Australian businesses gear up for digital transformation

Research unveiled by Telsyte, in association with DXC Technology, shows how helpful adopting an enterprise-wide strategic approach toward digital technology can be for Australian companies. Companies with a broad, comprehensive plan are better able to adjust to and innovate in an increasingly disrupted environment with a rapidly changing marketplace, and an appropriate digital strategy will be essential for remaining competitive.

Disruption will continue to typify digital transformation occurring across the globe, and Australian companies are budgeting appropriately: IT budgets are expected to grow by an average of 5.4 percent in 2018, which is significantly greater than inflation rates. However, many companies aren’t overly concerned with digital disruption, as only 52 percent of respondents believe their particular sector is being affected.

In spite of this complacency, Australian companies are preparing for changes. In all, 43 percent of organizations are running pilot programs for newer technology, with a goal of using these technologies for larger transformation. One-fifth of companies view themselves as the disruptors innovating and launching projects outside of their primary industry. In contrast, many companies are taking a more reactive position, with 60 percent simply keeping an eye on disruption and planning to respond only when they feel an impact.

Categorizing Businesses

Respondents were placed into one of four groups. Nine percent of companies had no digital strategy, while 23 percent recognize disruption but are currently responding by investigating options and, in some cases, running pilot programs. For 34 percent of respondents, dealing with disruption means relegating digital strategies to business units, while 32 percent of companies have an organization-wide digital strategy.

Within the final category, businesses were able to remain agile while controlling their digital spending, and they were focused on creating new products and services that could disrupt their industries. Compared to other groups, these companies were more likely to have supportive boards along with knowledgeable CEOs and empowered CIOs. Furthermore, many of these companies can be classified as disruptors already.

What the Future Holds

Based on their results, Telsyte predicts that, by 2022, approximately two-thirds of all corporations in Australia will replace separate digital programs run by business units to a more comprehensive approach. This new paradigm will be run by CEOs, and they’ll focus on enterprise-wide digital transformation. Key to this transformation will be forming partnerships with IT entities.

Outlined in the report was companies somewhat complacent attitude toward disruption. Mobile apps, for example, can be developed quickly and at a relatively low price point. Because of the ubiquity of smart devices, many companies considered mobile apps to be key toward surviving disruptions. Experts analyzing data for the report, however, argue that more fundamental change is needed as disruptive products and entities affect the market.

According to Seelan Nayagam, managing director of DXC Technology Australia and New Zealand, the research “underscores the importance for Australian businesses to adopt an enterprise-wide digital strategy”

Leaving strategic technology decisions to disparate business units is simply not sustainable. Abandoning disparate programs in favour of holistic digital strategies driven by corporate leaders, including the CEO and the board, ensures that all business units and everyone they serve can benefit from digital transformation.

Predicting the future, especially when it comes to technology, is always a risky endeavor. However, few would argue against the notion that disruption is going to revolutionize markets across the globe, including in Australia. While companies will need to decide how to best use technology to survive and thrive in the forthcoming disruptive era, there’s no doubt that ongoing investigation and investment will be needed going forward.