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Digital transformation ambitions are high, survey finds

Digital changes: more than half of companies in a survey said they expect about a third of their employees to be working remotely some days of the week a year from now (File photograph)

Remote working is taking hold in the Caribbean region and is set to continue, to a certain degree.

More than half the companies that responded to a survey expect at least 30 per cent of their employees to work remotely more than one day a week a year from now.

That is among the findings of PwC’s Caribbean Digital Readiness Survey 2021, which is its first Caribbean region study to gauge progress on digital transformation.

It found there is a high level of digital transformation ambition among businesses in the region, but there is also a wide gap between organisations out in front and those struggling to make headway.

Most respondents said they believed they were meeting or exceeding targets on integrating new technologies into their business processes, products and services. ​But more than a quarter of those in the survey acknowledged that they were behind target.

Only 15 per cent “believed that their digital fitness is on a par with or ahead of the leaders in their industry”.

Among other findings in the survey:

  • More than 80 per cent of businesses are focusing their digital strategy on modernising their brand with new capabilities.
  • Almost three-quarters of respondents believed digital technologies and behaviours had boosted productivity. And more than half believed it had increased employee satisfaction.
  • Nearly half of respondents believed their organisation was ​behind​ in digital upskilling of the workforce, citing lack of time and budget as top barriers to upskilling with lack of alignment and clarity on responsibilities relating to digital ownership, and inflexible or slow processes as the biggest challenges to their overall digital transformation.

Arthur Wightman, PwC Bermuda leader, ​ ​said​: ​“​The key takeaway in our survey is that digital transformation i​s as much about workforce capabilities and empowerment as systems and technology. Fo​r Caribbean region organisations, further upskilling is critical. ​ ​Nearly half of our survey respondents believe their organisation is behind in training workers with skills for the digital era. However, an overwhelming 80 per cent say their CEO is a champion for digital.”

While Zia Paton, PwC in the Caribbean digital leader, said: ​“The significant potential of digitisation includes superior, data-driven decisions, a more compelling employee and customer experience, and better tailored and targeted products and services. With so many digital possibilities, however, it’s critical to invest in the right ones.”

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Published February 02, 2021 at 8:00 am (Updated February 01, 2021 at 3:44 pm)

Digital transformation ambitions are high, survey finds

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