Dun & Bradstreet, a leading global provider of B2B data, insights and AI-driven platforms, released a primary survey-based report today on “Smart Digital Transformation: How CIOs are leading their organisation’s data strategy”. The survey covers responses of 250 Chief Information Officers (CIO) representing businesses with over INR 5 billion revenue, across 10 sectors and six major cities in India.
The survey showcases that business leaders have now accepted that COVID-19 is more than a short-term hurdle. The CIOs are prioritizing and planning for enhancements to technology, data quality, and automation capabilities to help them manage future disruption by the pandemic, as a part of their long-term sustainability initiatives.
- 56% of the CIOs plan to invest in more technologies to overcome data management challenges, demonstrating that better technology and data quality have gone from “nice-to-have” to “must-have” status in the current times
- With businesses embracing rapid digital transformation, data security for overall business is the top priority for 52% CIOs, followed by enabling remote workforce for 48% CIOs. Serving customers digitally was the focus area for 46% CIOs during the 1st wave of COVID-19
Avinash Gupta, Managing Director & CEO, Dun & Bradstreet India said, “CIOs are playing a pivotal role in navigating businesses through the current challenging times, while also ensuring to embrace the new normal in the connected world. With digitisation, the rate of data generation has increased considerably. Our survey indicates that most of the Indian companies (57%) are embracing automation for managing and refreshing data to ensure there is always Live Data available for business decisions. Further, 30% of them believe that Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning will be the most likely technology that they would adopt soon.
Dr. Arun Singh, Global Chief Economist, Dun & Bradstreet said, “As businesses were pushed to digitise almost overnight, their legacy systems were not adequately equipped to manage the volume and velocity of the data explosion that we are witnessing today. Our interaction with the CIO fraternity indicated that lack of technology maturity and delay in investment towards evolving data management practices are preventing them from exploring the full potential of data. Most businesses are struggling with real-time data analytics and management. High cost of data solutions, poor data quality, data integration issues, concerns with processing large datasets and handling constantly changing data are some of the core issues. It is now evident that an increasing percentage of CIOs are now realising the need to invest in technologies to improve the data management practices.”
Further, CIOs are becoming mindful of the missed opportunities that poor data quality can result in, versus a notable customer journey created with the help of good data collection and management practices. This is also reflected in the dramatic shift in their focus from primarily increasing cost efficiency. 55% of surveyed CIOs are currently spending their time on value creation for the business.
Key findings from the survey
Measures Taken to Navigate COVID-19 Disruption
- Nearly 60% of the responding CIOs stated that at least 10% of the total revenue was allocated towards their business unit; 33% of the CIOs stated that more than 20% of the total revenue was allocated towards their business units
- 59% of the CIOs anticipate their department’s budget to remain constant even after COVID-19, while 10% of CIOs foresee an increase; 31% of the CIOs expect their department’s budget to decrease after COVID-19
- The crisis-driven impetus towards value creation even supersedes more traditional goals of CIOs such as driving operational efficiency and reducing cost. 55% of the responding CIOs said they spend their time on value creation for their business compared to 40% of CIOs spending their time on cost savings
Data Collection and Data Management Challenges
- 56% of the CIOs plan to invest in more technologies to overcome data management challenges, demonstrating that better technology and data quality have gone from “nice-to-have” to “must-have” status in the current times. 49% of the CIOs plan to combat data management challenges by hiring more data professionals, while 32% of the CIOs plan to seek services from a third party
- 53% of the CIOs said they use data tracking (web database) to collect data, while 31% of the CIOs collect data through primary ways, and 27% of the CIOs source data from third parties i.e., data service providers and social media. Further, 26% of the CIOs source data through websites, cookies and web beacons
- Real time data analytics — the ability to obtain meaning from data as quickly as the data arrives — was cited as an issue e by 52% of CIOs, followed closely by data security which was cited by 50% of CIOs
- Two in five CIOs agree that their business is facing difficulty in using the full potential of data
Automation, Future Technologies and Skills
- 43% of the CIOs do not use automation currently, of which 24% are willing to explore it without any hesitation, 14% are not willing to try and another 5% are hesitant but might try