Digital Mastery Study 2020, © 2021 Capgemini

Digital transformation is making progress. Almost two-thirds of the world’s companies today possess the digital capabilities (60%) and leadership capabilities (62%) needed to realise digital transformation successfully. In 2018, the percentage of companies was 36% in both areas. The above figures were published in the recent Capgemini Research Institute study “Digital Mastery 2020: How organisations have progressed in their digital transformations over the past two years”, which surveyed 1,000 leaders at companies in different industries around the world. Retail businesses score best at 73% (just 37% in 2018). The increase is owed to retailers who have identified the growing demand for online offerings and focused more strongly on e-commerce. The telecommunications sector comes in second place at 71% (2018: 38%). The sector is said to have often succeeded in “redefining the value promise for customers and creating comprehensive digital experiences”. For digital capabilities, the automotive sector recorded the largest growth and saw its companies increase their percentage from 32% in 2018 to their present 69%. Investments in self-driving vehicles, mobility, electrification and connectivity have apparently sped up the innovation in their business models.

Four categories were studied to understand how companies enhanced their digital capabilities: talent and organisation; operations; business model innovation; and customer experience (CX). Companies that lead in digital and leadership capabilities were able to increase the margins between them and their competitors, with the Covid-19 pandemic accelerating this trend. Of companies with USD 10 billion or more in revenue, 68% indicated that they possessed the digital capabilities needed. Of companies with less than USD 10 billion in revenue, only 55% reported this – a significantly lower proportion. For leadership, 57% of these smaller organisations said that they possessed the required capabilities.

Improvements were seen when it came to motivating staff to take part in digital transformation. Today 63% of companies involve their employees in their digital initiatives, whereas in 2018 only 36% did. Nevertheless, fewer than half of the companies (48%) have so far invested in developing soft skills such as emotional intelligence, adaptability and collaboration. Another finding of the study is that only 45% of companies are currently promoting investments, projects and engagement in the domain of sustainability, even though consumers are increasingly interested in the environmental footprint left by businesses and the consequences of climate change.

To keep advancing digital transformation, the report argues that companies must reinvent the employee experience, utilise the advantages of a flexible workforce and ensure that social benefits for employees are adapted to the challenges of the digital age. It asserts that robust data and platform capacities should be developed, new business and engagement models scaled up and purpose and sustainability integrated into corporate cultures as core elements. It also contends that technology must always be viewed with both digital transformation and sustainability in mind.

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