One of the most remarkable consequences of COVID-19 has been the extent to which businesses’ digital transformation strategies have accelerated. From e-commerce to remote service, the uptake of digital tools and technologies around the world has been rapid.
Unable to show prospective buyers around properties, real estate companies invested in virtual tech to do the job for them. Telehealth saw an uptick as doctors used new digital products to serve their patients. Similarly, schools and universities leaned on edtech tools to teach students who were forced to study at home.
Such initiatives demonstrate how business leaders are embracing the opportunities of digital technology. Indeed, more than half of executives surveyed by McKinsey in 2020 said they were investing in new technologies for competitive advantage or to refocus their entire business around digital technologies.1 In 2017, the majority of those surveyed said cost reduction was the primary goal of digital transformation.
This mindset shift is critical if companies are to truly benefit from the next-generation capabilities of digital tools. Ultimately, says Steve Bates, Principal, KPMG in the US and global leader of KPMG International’s CIO Center of Excellence, “Technology has never been more important to organizations’ ability to survive and thrive.”2