by Bonnie Gardiner

Australian businesses falling behind in digital uptake

Mar 23, 20152 mins
IT Management

Australian enterprises are lagging behind in the use of digital technologies, resulting in stalled economic growth, new research reveals.

Australian businesses rank eighth out of the 17 leading economies on the lt;igt;Accenture Digital Density Indexlt;/igt;, scoring 52.7 out of 100, compared to top ranked Netherlands on 75.

The report shows improved digital performance within Australia by 10 points could lift annual GDP growth rates by 0.25 per cent over the next five years. This would result in an estimated A$34.5 billion of additional economic output in the year 2020, measured in 2014 prices.

The Index, described by Accenture as a tool that measures the extent to which digital technologies penetrate companies and national economies, determined that Australia’s enterprise application of digital technologies is inconsistent.

Australia was found a leader in the use of cloud and analytics, but a laggard in the use of RFID, knowledge management and crowdsourcing. While scoring second place in using digital to source finance, Australia had the lowest score in using digital to source and manage labour.

Discussing the results, John Cassidy, Australia digital strategy lead for Accenture Strategy, says Australia has its own set of strengths and weaknesses in the digital economy, but that success goes beyond merely digitising existing processes and customer channels.

“Companies need to reinvent processes and develop entirely new digitally-enabled products, services and customer experiences,” says Cassidy.

“The value of these digital measures comes not just in helping companies track their own performance at home, but in guiding investments abroad as Australian companies extend their global presence.

“It is important to get granular and to identify digital hotspots around the world that can support the various operations that underpin international growth,” he says.