Digital transformation has become a business imperative in the wake of the pandemic. Companies that have not modernized their processes and integrated cloud and analytics capabilities are severely disadvantaged. Genpact’s latest study, “Data-Driven Business Transformation,” reveals that only 8% of enterprises have fully modernized. This digital divide will result in those companies who can move quickly and take advantage of new opportunities, leaving behind those who are not. In addition to Genpact, Peak’s latest report, “State of AI 2022,” revealed that 55% of enterprises will be AI-First by 2025.

Yet, despite the clear advantages of AI integration, only 35% of c-suite executives have plans to implement it. According to Peak’s CEO, Richard Potter, “AI is inherently a data technology and must function as part of an overarching data strategy, yet most respondents in this survey are thinking about the two separately.” Potter also says, “Our research reveals that there is a lack of clarity within many companies around the overall AI strategy, even at the top levels of management. Suppose businesses want to successfully implement AI and, critically, drive value with this technology. In that case, we need open discussion within a business to ensure everyone is aligned to and understands the vision.” It’s time for companies to wake up and smell the coffee. AI is no longer a luxury but a business necessity.

These two reports make it abundantly clear that the future of business is digital and data-driven. A disconnect exists between the importance of these technologies and the level of investment. Businesses need to close the gap and take advantage of the opportunities that digital transformation and AI offer. ESG (environmental, social, governance) is an area where businesses can make a difference.

“Genpact’s survey reveals that 43% of respondents say environmental, social, and corporate governance (ESG) considerations drive the demand for data-driven business transformation. But only 22% will be allocated a budget to finding ways to support ESG initiatives in 2022.” ESG is quickly becoming a key focus for businesses and investors alike. It is no longer enough to have a good product or service simply. Companies must also be seen to be doing good in the world. This is where digital transformation can make a real difference. Businesses can track their progress against ESG goals and report back to stakeholders by using data and analytics. This level of transparency is essential in building trust and ensuring that companies are accountable for their actions.

Furthermore, a significant correlation between both reports is the importance of technology in promoting a hybrid environment. Companies must provide innovative tools and technology in a hybrid world of work to promote social interactions, integrate new hires, and support the critical people connections that nurture the company’s future leaders. Digital transformation can play an essential role in supporting a remote workforce and delivering long-term business success. It is time for businesses to take the plunge and embrace digital transformation.

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Additionally, businesses must understand that data and analytics are the key to success in the digital age. The ability to make sense of large data sets and extract valuable insights is a core competency that all businesses must possess. AI can assist in this area by providing the tools and capabilities needed to make better decisions faster.

There are also several critical takeaways from Peak’s report worth highlighting. Firstly, it is clear that businesses need to invest in data infrastructure to be successful with AI. Many firms are funding data and AI without integrating them, which will result in an expensive infrastructure upgrade down the road – a competitive disadvantage. Furthermore, 96 percent of respondents said their company has plans to develop a data strategy, but only 35% say they have any plans to help AI. On the other hand, more than half of those polled now have a Chief Data Officer, with 86% establishing a data lake or warehouse. What does this mean? Businesses are starting to understand the importance of data, but they are not yet making the connection to AI.

Enterprises should look to countries like India to invest in data infrastructure and AI. These countries are building a competitive advantage that will be difficult to overcome, even for the US and UK. According to Peak’s study, India is the most digitally skilled country, with 52 percent of decision makers recognizing significant levels of digital change in their sectors, compared to 36 percent in both the United States and the United Kingdom. Furthermore, 75% of respondents in the US and 78% in India feel their firm is data-driven, whereas this proportion plummets to 58% in the UK.

It is also clear that businesses need to move beyond the proof-of-concept stage with AI. Many firms are still experimenting with AI and have not yet scaled up their efforts. This needs to change if businesses want to reap the full benefits of AI. But how can they experience success? Below are outlined key steps for digital enterprises to take advantage of digital transformation and stay ahead of the curve.

Key Steps To Take For Digital Enterprises

A clear strategy is required to take advantage of digital transformation. Below are some key steps that businesses should take:

Conduct a digital audit

The first step is to conduct a digital audit. This will help businesses identify areas where they need to improve and make changes. It is essential to have a clear understanding of the current state of affairs before making any decisions.

Create a digital roadmap

After the digital audit is complete, businesses should create a digital roadmap. This will help map out the journey and ensure that all stakeholders are on board with the plan. It is essential to have buy-in from everyone involved to make the transition successful.

Develop a clear business case

A business case will help sell digital transformation to senior management and other key decision-makers. It is essential to have a solid understanding of digital transformation’s benefits. Moreover, the business case should be carefully crafted to address the organization’s specific needs.

Invest in the right technology

Digital transformation requires investment in the right technology. It is essential to have a clear understanding of the requirements before making decisions. Furthermore, businesses should consider using cloud-based solutions to reduce the cost of ownership.

Adopt an agile mindset

Digital transformation requires businesses to adopt an agile mindset. This means being open to change and willing to experiment. It is essential to have a growth mindset to succeed in the digital age.

Embrace digital culture

Digital transformation also requires businesses to embrace the digital culture. This means creating a work environment that is conducive to innovation and creativity. It is essential to have the right people to make the transition successful.

Monitor progress and adjust course

Finally, businesses should monitor progress and adjust course as needed. It is essential to track key metrics and indicators to gauge the success of the digital transformation. Moreover, it is vital to be flexible and adaptable to make the necessary changes.

The Way Forward

Digital transformation is a journey, not a destination. It is an ongoing process that requires businesses to evolve and adapt continuously. There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Each company must tailor its approach to fit its unique needs and requirements. The key is to have a clear strategy, the right technology, and the right people. With these foundations in place, businesses can begin to execute their digital transformation plans. These reports aim to provide insights and guidance on the digital transformation process. Companies can position themselves for success in the digital age by implementing these key steps.

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