Dell Technologies has released results from a global study that shows organizations are shifting their digital transformation programs into high gear and have already accomplished in a few months what would normally have taken them years. The findings, updated biennially in the Dell Technologies’ Digital Transformation Index (DT Index), indicate organizations are accelerating transformational technology programs during the global COVID-19 pandemic in India.
In one of the first global studies to measure business behavior as a result of the pandemic, Dell Technologies’ 2020 Index found that 94.7 percent of Indian organizations (Global: 79.7% & APJ: 83.6%) have fast-tracked some digital transformation programs this year and 92.3 percent (Global: 79.3% & APJ: 86%) are re-inventing their business model.
The DT Index is a global benchmark indicating organizations’ status of digital transformation and their performance across the globe. The survey included 4,300 business leaders (C-suite to Director) from mid-size to enterprise companies across 18 countries.
A new digital transformation curve
Since the first DT index in 2018, this year’s results, track the first rise in the number of Digital Leaders (the most digitally mature organization) to 12.3 percent in India (Global: 5.7% and APJ: 5.8%). Digital Adopters in India (the second most digitally mature group) have grown from 33.5 percent in 2018 (Global: 23% & APJ: 23%) to 55.3 percent in 2020 (Global: 39.2% & APJ: 39.4%) – a 21.8 percentage point increase (Global: 16.2 & APJ: 16.4).
The India findings of the DT Index also record a modest drop since 2018 in the number of Digital Laggards (the least digitally mature group) by 0.8 percentage points (Global: 6.6 & APJ: 6.6) and a steep fall in the second to last group, Digital Followers, by 9-percentage points (Global: 16.1 & APJ: 13). These organizations are moving up, into the Digital Adopter and Digital Evaluator groups, which have expanded in tandem.
“The current times have made Indian organizations realize the importance of having an IT infrastructure which is flexible and provides them with the agility to adapt to the ever-changing business environment. We are living in a data era, where constant investment in digital technologies to meet the barriers to progress is a must. This shift in approach by organizations here recently is the primary reason why there is a rise in digital leaders in the country” said Mr. Alok Ohrie, President and Managing Director, Dell Technologies India. “ At Dell Technologies, we believe that our constant innovative efforts, customer-first approach and our holistic portfolio make us the right digital partners for businesses and we shall continue to strive to help them achieve digital maturity, leading to business continuity during all times.”
Using a curve visual, the DT Index plots digital transformation progress, from one wave of the DT Index to the next.
Barriers to transformation
The pandemic may have catalyzed digital transformation across the globe, but continuous transformation is challenging 97 percent of Indian organizations (Global: 93.7% & APJ: 96.4%) are facing entrenched barriers to transformation. According to the 2020 DT Index, the following are the top-3 barriers to digital transformation success in India:
1. Data privacy and cybersecurity concerns (up from 5th place in 2016): 46.7% (Global: 31.4% & APJ: 36.9%)
2. Unable to extract valuable insights from data and/or information overload (up from 11th place in 2016): 38.3% (Global: 29% & APJ: 31.1%)
3. Lack of economic growth (newly identified barrier): 36.3% (Global: 24.4% & APJ: 27.6%)
Responding in an uncertain world
Prior to the pandemic, business investments were strongly focused on foundational technologies, rather than emerging technologies. The vast majority, 92.7% percent of Indian respondents (Global: 88.7% & APJ: 91.6%) recognize that as a result of disruption this year, they need a more agile/scalable IT infrastructure to allow of contingencies. The DT Index shows the top technology investments for the next one to three years in India.
1. Digital workplace: 81% (Global: 80% & APJ: 77.9%)
2. Cybersecurity and privacy: 80.7% (Global: 82.1% & APJ: 81.1%)
3. On-demand digital services: 78.7% (Global: 73.2% & APJ: 72.9%)
4. Multi-cloud environment: 78% (Global: 74.4% & APJ: 73%)
5. Data management and analytics: 77% (Global: 81.7% & APJ: 79%)
Recognizing the importance of emerging technologies, 93.7 percent of respondents in India (Global: 82% & APJ: 84.6%) envision increased usage of Augmented Reality to learn how to do or fix things in an instant; 95 percent respondents in India (Global: 84.8% & APJ: 87.6%) foresee organizations using Artificial Intelligence and data models to predict potential disruptions, and 90.7 percent (Global: 77.8% & APJ: 84.4%) predict distributed ledgers – such as Blockchain – will make the gig economy fairer (by cutting out the intermediary). Despite these findings, only 22.7 percent respondents in India (Global: 16.4% & APJ: 17%) are planning to invest in Virtual/Augmented Reality, just 50 percent (Global: 31.6% & APJ: 39.8%) intend to invest in Artificial Intelligence and a mere 16.7 percent (Global: 15.2% & APJ: 16.1%) plan to invest distributed ledgers in the next one to three years.
During July and August of 2020, Dell Technologies partnered with independent research company Vanson Bourne who surveyed 4,300 business leaders from mid-size to enterprise organizations across 18 countries, create a global benchmark indicating businesses’ status of transformation. Vanson Bourne classified businesses’ digital business efforts by examining their IT strategy, workforce transformation initiatives and perceived performance against a core set of digital business attributes. This is the third installment of the DT Index (the inaugural study in 2016 was followed by the second DT Index in 2018.