Creating new capabilities for the future

Modernizers want to create new capabilities and most are embracing more advanced definitions of digital to get there. Their senior leaders encourage innovation at all levels and their digital efforts so far have improved retention and recruitment. But, they say digital strategy is woven into corporate strategy only about half the time. As a group, they’re facing disruption at different rates and from different places and will need to align their beliefs about digital with the challenges they face.

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Living the evolution of digital
Modernizers are weaving new tools into their business – and it’s paying off.

Nearly half of modernizers view digital as an investment into integrative technology across the business. That focus is contributing to strong financial performance. Realize the promise of digital, by embracing broader definitions that include collaborative, flat ways of working and bolstering the digital acumen of senior leaders.

Your customers are demanding attention
Investing in experience pays back in dividends.

Overall, 74% of modernizers see customer experience as critical to digital transformation, but only 39% say their digital investments are creating better customer experiences. That’s less true for top financial performers in the group. Why? They see customer and employee experience as equally crucial.

Now What?

Bolster employee and customer experience and develop a strategy that ties in both to broader digital and corporate priorities. The payoff? More loyalty, bigger price premiums -- and profits.

A muddled middle faces tomorrow
Success today doesn’t equal the same tomorrow.

Modernizers are spread across the disruption spectrum, with some facing imminent threats and others just emerging from disruption. Yet, only one-third believe they face a serious threat from digital disruption. Fortunately, modernizers are in a strong position, with a workforce whose agile management and human-centered design skills are strong. What’s more, nearly 60% of modernizers say they encourage innovation at all levels.

Now What?

Adopt core principles for winning the game of disruption. Companies with a clearly differentiated identity are better able to thrive. Spread these principles across the business so people feel like they’re part of something collaborative, transparent and bigger than their own work. By doing this you can also take advantage of the skills that already exist among your workforce.

Attitude counts - and so do actions
Time to embrace digital across the business and bring leaders up to speed.

Is it possible for leaders to champion digital and incorporate key elements of working digitally while not fully embracing the promise of digital themselves? For modernizers, the answer is yes. On one hand modernizers build teams that bring together technologists, creatives and business experts, and break down bureaucracies to make faster decisions; however, they have yet to fully incorporate digital into their broader corporate strategy across the business or bring key leaders up to speed in mindset and skills.

Now What?

Being digitally fit starts at the top and requires embracing a fail-fast culture and expanding definitions of digital beyond the 71% of modernizers that see digital as limited in function--either as IT, as a one-off silo or as an effort to integrate technologies into the business.

Move into tomorrow, with a new focus
Now is not the time to get comfortable.

Although 68% of modernizers say they have changed their recruitment and training processes to build a more digitally-savvy workforce, they aren’t fully investing in—and building employee skills in—the emerging technologies that can drive to new, more modern iterations of their business. This group might be missing out by not actively developing skills that align more closely with where they want to take their organizations.

Now What?

Failure to upskill employees is a costly mistake: 38% of CEOs globally say a lack of key skills is a threat to business growth, and about one-third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will change--more than once-- in the next five to seven years. Many modernizers need to transform the workforce by incorporating the skills, working practices and infrastructure to support digital transformation. Align training and incorporate digital tools to shift employee focus to push the business forward

It’s not just about software and tech
To build new capabilities, evolve toward the future—now.

Modernizers are out to bring new capabilities to their companies and they’ve used investments in digital and more agile ways of work to begin to build success. Nearly half of them say they’ve seen profit margin increases up to 10% over the past three years. But there’s still room to evolve.

Now What?

Leaders need to expand their concept of what comprises digital. Hint: it’s everything. It’s not just IT or siloed efficiencies -- it’s a mindset and way of working. Right now, only half of all modernizers have leaders who boast real digital know-how or have made digital an explicit part of corporate strategy.

Weave digital throughout the business -- starting at the top. Examine and adopt processes and technologies that will help the organization evolve. Embrace collaborative, flat ways of working and encourage innovation across the company.

Want to explore a different company aspiration?

Click on an aspiration to see how each group is managing digital experience, disruption, leadership and workforce--and the financial impact of those decisions.