The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated what was an already occurring event, an era defining shift from an industrial economy to an information-centric one. The disruption to traditional market channels and ways of working has super-charged the significance of the digital agenda.

According to our recent study of IT leadership, companies that had already made meaningful investments in digital technologies such as cloud, automation, and artificial intelligence, are poised to accelerate those investments in the coming year. In contrast, companies that were in the early exploratory phases or had not yet started, are less likely to invest in the near term—their hands tied by limited capital, poor execution, or an inability to change rapidly enough.

In the new reality, the accelerated shift toward new technology-powered products and business models is set to become ever more pronounced. IDC predicts that by 2024, over 50% of IT spend will go towards digital transformation and innovation, up from 31% in 2018. Organizations will also look for greater efficiency in their budgets by shifting to less labor—and capital-intensive operating models, notably by leveraging cloud. KPMG research finds that nearly half (47%) of IT leaders believe COVID-19 has permanently accelerated the adoption of emerging technologies.

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