Forty months is not a lot of time to design, develop and deliver something monumental. Consider that it took 182 years to build the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, 20 years to build the Great Pyramid of Giza and 10 years to build the Panama Canal. Executives from digital-leading companies, however, tell us that in just over three years – the year 2020 – 17 different digital technologies will dramatically impact the way they work, and transform the work that gets done, so we don’t have much time.
This means that within the next 40 months the exponential growth of digitization and machine learning will fundamentally change how businesses create value, satisfy customers and outperform competitors. This also means that in this same time period, companies must take actions that position them for the next level of success. If they don’t embrace digital, for many it will be game over.
To better understand the strategies and technologies that digital transformation winners require, Cognizant’s Center for the Future of Work, in partnership with the renowned economist Nouriel Roubini, surveyed 2,000 executives, 500 managers, 150 MBA students and 50 futurists across 18 countries. What we found is that today’s and tomorrow’s winners will need to think differently, follow different strategies, deploy different technologies and make cybersecurity a top priority – all while realizing that time is slipping away.
Guiding a business through the turbulence and friction of digital transformation is perhaps the great challenge of our time. Just as John Ellis’s invention of high-temperature oils unleashed the power of railroads, industrialization and economic growth in the 19th century, data is the lubricant of today’s digital age. More to the point, today’s hyper-digital transformation will be driven by optimized information logistics systems (OILS) and IT infrastructures capable of facilitating real-time digital interactions.
Our research revealed several findings that we detail in the report:
- Digital leaders think and act differently.
- Digital leaders recognize that digital transformation is the key to their future relevance and success, and they act as though their lives depend on getting transformation right.
- Recognition alone is not enough, though. Digital leaders also execute the right actions and technologies in the right sequences to successfully navigate resource constraints.
- Digital technologies are the keys that unlock a golden door.
The 2,000-plus executives we surveyed have already generated $328.7 billion in total revenue through the strategic deployment of digital technologies in the last year. Respondents believe there’s much more to be had, though: We found businesses could unlock another $151.6 billion in value if they take full advantage of the digital opportunities at hand.
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