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Majority of CEOs concerned about digital transformation

By James Walker     Aug 22, 2017 in Technology
CEOs are concerned their business lacks the capacity to respond to digital transformation, according to a report from KPMG. Business leaders are finding it difficult to use digital strategies in their innovation and are also distrustful of their data.
KPMG released the survey of 400 U.S. CEOs earlier this week. It found that while 75 percent of CEOs are generally optimistic about digital transformation, more than half are concerned about implementation realities.
57 percent of respondents said their organisation doesn't possess the requisite innovative processes to react to disruption. They risk being overtaken by other companies more advanced in their digital transformations. Despite the risk, most have a positive outlook though, seeing industrial disruption as an opportunity rather than a threat.
The majority of CEOs said they're actively attempting to ignite disruption in their sector. They want to beat their rivals to the next phase of digital industry, believing that an early transformation will be the key to success.
Confidence has grown significantly over the past year with 46 percent of CEOs now "highly confident" about their growth prospects over the next three years. The figure was 32 percent in the same period in 2016.
As digital leaders begin to implement transformation strategies, some are finding migration more challenging than others. One in six respondents told KPMG they are unsure how to integrate new technologies, such as artificial intelligence and computer vision, into their processes.
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49 percent revealed they don't fully trust the data behind their decisions, suggesting that measuring the reach of digital transformation remains a standout concern. 32 percent said they find it difficult to gauge the impact transformation is having due to a lack of quality customer data.
The study shows that business leaders are generally convinced by the concept of digital transformation. Although the majority view transformation as an opportunity, individual leaders are having different experiences implementing it. Companies in traditional industries are rapidly becoming digital businesses. Only the ones which make the most of their data will see long-term success.
"While CEOs and their organizations continue to face significant disruption, this year's CEO study finds CEOs in a much better place in terms of business confidence," said KPMG U.S. Chairman and CEO Lynne Doughtie.
"There are several issues too. They need to sharpen their customer focus and don't trust the data that's presented to them. And they seek to move away from a culture of short-termism, recognizing the negative impact on long term strategic objectives," Doughtie added.
The survey reaffirms other recent findings that digital transformation will be critical to business survival. With over 75 percent of the CEOs expressing a belief that digital investment will lead to more revenue opportunities, it's clear technology will be critical to the future of business. With leaders now aware of the task ahead of them, they're turning their attention to the implementation details.
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