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Expleo Survey Reveals One Third of Businesses in Ireland Won’t Exist by 2025 Without Digital Transformation

Expleo, the technology partner for innovative companies, today announces the results of a new survey which reveals that one-third of business leaders in Ireland expect their business to fail by 2025 if they don’t take steps to digitally transform. This increases to half of all businesses by 2030.

As Ireland continues to be impacted by Covid-19, Expleo commissioned a survey of 200 business and IT leaders across the island of Ireland to understand how the pandemic is affecting their organisations, including the threats and opportunities as business and consumer demands evolve. The results are included in Expleo’s new Business Transformation Index 2021 report.

The survey found that Irish businesses lost an average of €185K each on abandoned IT projects following the Covid-19 outbreak. However, rather than sitting still, many organisations are taking a ‘digital first’ approach to address legacy issues and to help transform their processes and services. Almost half (48%) of businesses in Ireland have already increased the speed of their digital transformation due to the pandemic. A further 41% have launched new products or services this year to meet the changing needs of other businesses and consumers.

The survey reveals that most business leaders seem to understand the importance of digital technologies and innovation as they look towards 2021. Almost three quarters (73%) of respondents believe that their company’s board is now more likely to approve new IT strategies and innovations as a result of the pandemic. 42% revealed their company has already made significant changes to their business plan.

Looking to 2021, the top three areas for increased investment over the next 12 months are in digital transformation (80%), innovation (76%) and digital skills training (67%).

When asked which sectors in Ireland are most and least prepared for a more digitally enhanced world, the best-prepared sectors are seen to be Pharma/Medical (85% believe they are well equipped), Financial Services (82%); Professional Services (73%) and Utilities (71%). The least prepared sectors are identified as Construction (87% believe they are not well equipped); Education (71%); Hotels/Tourism (57%) and Government (55%).

Commenting on the findings, Phil Codd, Managing Director, Expleo Ireland, said: 

“Undoubtedly, the pandemic has had a significant impact on the operations and fortunes of enterprises in Ireland this year. While some sectors are experiencing more difficulties than others, it’s imperative that all business leaders take the right steps now to secure their organisation’s viability and relevance, and also to ensure future growth and success.

“Enterprise agility has been showcased widely in our report, particularly when we consider the fact that 73% of respondents feel that their company’s board is now more likely to approve new IT strategies and innovations as a result of the pandemic. On the subject of board strategies, strong CIO and CTO representation at board level has been something we have long championed. Now is the time to make this strategic pivot to ensure decision making is informed by the latest technological expertise.

“While our research indicates that inaction around digital transformation is considered an existential threat, it’s reassuring that many businesses seem to be taking decisive actions to ensure they can survive and even thrive. It’s particularly encouraging that the three biggest areas of investment growth in 2021 will be in digital transformation, innovation and digital skills training. There’s a growing realisation that people, backed by innovative digital technologies, will be the real drivers of enterprise growth now and post-pandemic across the island of Ireland.”

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