Report: Most business leaders don't feel prepared for technological change

Most business leaders are unprepared for the fourth industrial revolution, according to a new survey

There is a concerning lack of readiness for technological change within Australian organisations, according to KPMG Digital Delta.

In its 4th Industrial Revolution Benchmark Report, KPMG said most business leaders are unprepared for the fourth industrial revolution (4IR), and the convergence of the physical, digital and biological worlds.

KPMG Digital Delta surveyed 198 Australian business leaders, gauging their organisations’ uptake and understanding of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation (RPA) and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Produced in collaboration with global analytics platform, Faethm, it found most Australian business leaders lack a deep understanding or experience with the technologies, with 47 per cent having 'little' knowledge and 9 per cent having 'never heard of' the concept.

Less than half (46 per cent) of Australian business leaders feel their organisation is strongly prepared for technological change. On average, respondents rated the maturity of their organisation’s adoption of 4IR technologies below three out five.

"The rapid acceleration in the capabilities, usage and effects of AI, robotics, automation and machine learning represents a fundamental change in the way we live, work, and relate to one another. The lack of readiness among Australian organisations is concerning. Change is already taking place, and it’s critical that business leaders understand these technologies and how to harness them to remain locally and globally competitive," KPMG Digital Delta partner, Piers Hogarth-Scott, said.

This may be due, in part, organisations holding back their adoption of AI because of mistrust, potential bias and a lack of transparency and explainability. That at least is the findings according to another survey, this time by EY.

These key factors were identified by over 70 per cent of participants in a recent poll during an EY webinar as the biggest barriers to raising trust levels in AI, particularly in Australia. When asked about their AI journeys, almost one-fifth of those polled (18.8 per cent) expressed that they are exploring AI solutions that may be relevant to their industry. Despite the clear trend and gradual increased usage, the EY poll also shows that almost half of the polling participants (41 per cent) are interested in exploring AI, but are not sure where to start.

“Trust is the foundation on which organisations can build stakeholder and consumer confidence and active participation with AI systems. Across Asia-Pacific, governments and organisations acknowledge how AI technology can deliver increasing value and are experiencing life with AI, in particular facial recognition technology," EY Asia-Pacific intelligent automation leader, Andy Gillard, said. "With the risks and impacts of AI spanning across technical, ethical and social domains, introducing new mechanisms to address the unique risks of AI is needed, such as the development of frameworks and guidelines. 

“Dealing with AI solutions that span across different jurisdictions all with different privacy regulations and cultural norms of what is socially acceptable is not an easy task. To maximise the real value of AI, business leaders must first build trust with internal and external stakeholders to clear up doubts about the data being collected and used in their AI systems.”

In its report, KPMG noted many reasons for adoption of 4IR technologies, but customer experience (CX) improvements is the current key driver, at 75 per cent. CX is seen as the area of greatest impact on businesses (4.3 out of 5), over products and services, innovation, operating model (all 4.1) and workforce (3.9). Increased productivity (67 per cent), innovation (64 per cent) and process automation (62 per cent) are other key drivers of adoption.

However, about one-third of respodnents feel their staff do have the necessary skills to implement new technologies, one third feel they do not have staff with the necessary skills, and one third is unsure.

"While the approach to implementation depends largely on the business model and needs, a business-wide technology strategy is necessary to reach more mature levels of implementation," Faethm CEO, Michael Priddis, said. "Regardless of the industry and the position, life-long learning will be a necessary condition for future employment and companies that support strategy-building in this regard can add great value for businesses and employees alike.

"Without a clear company direction or dedicated resources, employees are unlikely to have a distinct career path to transition into the work of the future through upskilling or reskilling."

Follow CMO on Twitter: @CMOAustralia, take part in the CMO conversation on LinkedIn: CMO ANZ, follow our regular updates via CMO Australia's Linkedin company page, or join us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/CMOAustralia.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Latest Videos

Launch marketing council Episode 5: Retailer and supplier

In our fifth and final episode, we delve into the relationship between retailer and supplier and how it drives and influences launch marketing strategies and success. To do that, we’re joined by Campbell Davies, group general manager of Associated Retailers Limited, and Kristin Viccars, marketing director A/NZ, Apex Tool Group. Also featured are Five by Five Global managing director, Matt Lawton, and CMO’s Nadia Cameron.

More Videos

The best part: optimizing your site for SEO enables you to generate high traffic, and hence free B2B lead generation. This is done throug...

Sergiu Alexei

The top 6 content challenges facing B2B firms

Read more

Nowadays, when everything is being done online, it is good to know that someone is trying to make an improvement. As a company, you are o...

Marcus

10 lessons Telstra has learnt through its T22 transformation

Read more

Check out tiny twig for comfy and soft organic baby clothes.

Morgan mendoza

Binge and The Iconic launch Inactivewear clothing line

Read more

NetSuite started out as a cloud-based provider of Enterprise Resource Planning software or as NetSuite solution provider, which companies...

talalyousaf

NetSuite to acquire Bronto's digital marketing platform for US$200m

Read more

Thanks for sharing this post, its really good information I get through this blog.CDPO Online Exam Training

Infosectrain01

3 ways Booking.com is improving its B2B marketing game

Read more

Blog Posts

Getting privacy right in a first-party data world

With continued advances in marketing technology, data privacy continues to play catchup in terms of regulation, safety and use. The laws that do exist are open to interpretation and potential misuse and that has led to consumer mistrust and increasing calls for a stronger regulatory framework to protect personal information.

Furqan Wasif

Head of biddable media, Tug

​Beyond greenwashing: Why brands need to get their house in order first

Environmental, Social and (Corporate) Governance is a hot topic for brands right now. But before you start thinking about doing good, Craig Flanders says you best sort out the basics.

Craig Flanders

CEO, Spinach

​The value of collaboration: how to keep it together

Through the ages, from the fields to the factories to the office towers and now to our kitchen tables, collaboration has played a pivotal role in how we live and work. Together. We find partners, live as families, socialise in groups and work as teams. Ultimately, we rely on these collaborative structures to survive and thrive.

Rich Curtis

CEO, FutureBrand A/NZ

Sign in