Almost half of the IT and business leaders in a new study remain complacent about the impact of digital transformation on their business. 

That’s according to research conducted by Telsyte and commissioned by DXC Technology.

The report, “Beyond Disruption: How Australian Organisations Can Transform and Thrive in the Digital Age is based on a survey of 400 leading Australian companies and their attitudes towards IT and digital transformation.

When asked about their organisation’s approach to digital disruption most Australian company’s have embrace a “wait and see” approach. 60 per cent of respondents admit they are only “keeping an eye” on disruption and reacting “if and when it begins to impact us” and 18 per cent plan to “do nothing, business as usual.”

The the other side of coin, 12 per cent of respondents said they are developing ways to digitally disrupt  their industry and 10 per cent are looking to partner with digital disruptor organisations.

“There is a level of complacency among Australian businesses that enough is being done to handle the impending disruption to their markets and go-to-market strategies,” said Foad Fadaghi, Telsyte managing director.

“The challenge is that when you dig a little deeper, many organisations are simply equating digital with building more mobile apps.”

Fadaghi said he’d be surprised if companies continue with reactive rather than proactive strategies, citing the introduction of the mandatory data breach law as motivation.

“What we are seeing is that regardless of the digital strategy… there is a clear trend in the Australian market of complacency. It gets scary for these organisations when they have to deal with a major challenge to the organisation around technology.”

Telsyte: Beyond Disruption 2018
Telsyte: Beyond Disruption 2018

The research reveals that Australian IT budgets are set to grow at an average of 5.4 per cent in 2018, a key driver driven of this growth comes from those companies who believe that digital transformation will imapct their business.

According to the report, the two main approaches to digital transformation are business-unit led and organisation-wide.

While digital strategies have traditionally developed as individual projects, companies that adopt a  strategic, enterprise-wide approach to digital technology are better placed to compete, the research found.

A project-led approach has resulted in business units taking control of their technology initiatives ( and technology budgets) deploying web and mobile apps, and undertaking digital optimisation of their business activities. According to the research, one in eight respondents say they have business units with a bigger technology budget than the IT department

Once see as roadblocks to digital transformation, IT is being brought back into the loop as digital strategies mature. For example, business units miss the bigger picture, introduce security holes and it may end up costing the business more in the long run.

Telsyte forecasts that by 2022, two-thirds of all Australian corporations will have moved on from a separate business unit-owned programs to a comprehensive, more strategic, CEO-led approach to enterprise-wide digital transformation that include key IT partners.

Telsyte: Beyond Disruption 2018
Telsyte: Beyond Disruption 2018
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