SAP has announced results of an international study which has revealed that access to appropriate budgets is key to midmarket digitalisation.
The SAP Digital Transformation Executive Study found that more than a fifth (21 percent) of all small and midsize enterprises surveyed cited lack of budget as the biggest hurdle to becoming a true digital business.
This reason was followed closely by lack of time (15 percent) and sophisticated technologies (15 percent).
Lack of employee know-how does not appear to be a reason for the slow pace of midmarket digitalisation.
Just 8 percent of the SMEs found this to be the biggest challenge and only 7 percent see poor planning as a problem for their digital journey. As such, the SME segment differs greatly from large enterprises, who say their biggest challenge is a lack of employee expertise (25 percent).
Almost all (92 percent) of the most successful “digital leaders” – a group the study identified as leaders who are more intelligently, effectively and quickly creating change than their rivals – surveyed have a digital process in place to improve customer experience.
The same group of “digital leaders” overwhelmingly (73 percent) said that digital efforts aid in attracting and retaining top talent.
More than half (57 percent) of all SMEs surveyed see a shorter time to market as the biggest profit driver for their companies over the next two years. An increase in brand awareness ranked second (39 percent), followed by an increase of employer engagement (38 percent) and the development of new products and services (36 percent).
Only 3 percent of SMEs said their digital transformation projects were managed by dedicated teams, compared to 24 percent of large enterprises.
No matter the size, the main responsibility for digital transformation in the enterprise lies with the IT department according to respondents (75 percent).
Oxford Economics was commissioned by the SAP Centre for Business Insight program to conduct and analyse a survey of over 3,000 executives in 17 countries about their readiness for digital transformation.
The survey included more than 1,300 companies with revenues below $500 million. Responses from companies with $500 million to $1 billion in revenue were also analysed to understand how digital transformation efforts change as companies grow.