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article imageCEO perspectives in the digital age

By Tim Sandle     Apr 12, 2018 in Business
Research from British Telecom and the Economist Intelligence Unit reveals that 40 percent of CEOs currently have digital transformation at the top of their agenda. The research provides some best practice advice.
The new research explores the views of more than 400 global CEOs. The findings reveal the importance of digital transformation to most multinational organisations. This is demonstrated with the majority of CEOs reportedly digital transformation at the top of their boardroom agenda, plus about a quarter of them a senior staff leading transformation programs.
A further finding of interest is that 75 percent of CEOs are confident that their company-based programs are capable of delivering the necessary strategic objectives. These objectives are: making operational efficiencies, improving customer service and innovating for the future.
The report, which is titled "Leading from the front CEO perspectives on business transformation in the digital age", outlines three areas where businesses should focus as part of their digital transformation journey. These areas are drawn from the report findings, based on advice from leading CEOs. Despite the reported successes, 86 percent of the CEOs state they have encountered challenges in delivering and implementing transformation strategies across their organisation.
Customer experience is key
The first lesson is that customer service together with the digital customer experience is of great importance. The CEOs note that for this to work, barriers need to be overcome. These can be knocked down by gaining insight into what customers want and then selecting the necessary technology to deliver it. Additionally, this requires employees with the appropriate skills.
No digital transformation can succeed without the right infrastructure
The CEOs state that the infrastructure for their digital programs is of huge importance. The most important aspects are the Internet of Things, cloud computing and mobile computing. The main barriers to achieving this are inflexible technology, with the solution being an integrated, cost effective and secure infrastructure.
Security concerns should not hold back digital transformation
CEOs consider cybersecurity as not only a means to protect businesses, but also as an opportunity to create differentiation, especially with consumer-facing sectors. In addition, many of organisations surveyed are using cyber-related marketing both to educate their customers to be safer online and to communicate to customers how seriously they take cyber security. Overall security and technology skills need to be made a key focal point within each organization.
In parallel news, Brother U.K. has commissioned a survey with The Daily Telegraph: "Looking at the Tools of Digital Transformation". This study found that more than one-third of businesses plan to invest in technology over the next year with around a quarter investing in upskilling existing talent.
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