A study by NovaSBE in partnership with the consulting firm Ernst and Young reveals that digital transformation comes as no surprise to business as decision makers seem to be aware of the ongoing digital revolution. Of the 102 companies that responded to the questionnaire, 62% indicated that they are a pioneer in implementing new technologies within their sector, which shows a high level of optimism about their position compared to the competition.
The authors of the study show that despite the confidence, Portuguese companies do not appear to be advanced in the digital transformation process, at least in relation to their international competitors. However, 41% of the respondents say that the transformation process started more than 5 years ago in their company, whereas only 1% said they had no interest in transforming their business with the help of the new technologies. Of the various sectors that have come to the assessment here, media companies are the ones who appear to have started the process earlier, as opposed to the distribution industry.
As for the tools that are being used to leverage this process, the study concludes that companies are giving more importance to communication via social networks and digital marketing, big data and analytics, cloud solutions and the internet of things. However, only 35% of companies ensure that they are in an advanced phase of implementing these solutions. By comparison, there are very few significant investments in autonomous driving, quantum computing and 3D printing – "when they identify the level of future investment in technologies, participants report that their organizations will invest in the same technologies they have invested in the past."
Despite the different levels of technological adoption, NovaSBE and EY conclude that in Portugal, digital transformation seems to start with the customer's experience with the company and the development of products and services where high levels of development are reported. There is less development in strategy and leadership, people and organization and management of information and risk.
The study also served to conclude that it is the energy and utilities sector that reports the greatest technological development. Companies in the distribution and retail industry are the least developed in this area.
Regarding the process of digital transformation, the participants' perception is that there will be a positive impact on the relationships between people, the organization of work and the role that employees play. It is also believed that the time horizon of these changes is very close, to happen in the next 2 years.