RESEARCH REPORT

In brief

In brief

  • This is the 4th consecutive year for Accenture to launch the China Enterprises Digital Transformation Index Research in collaboration with CICS-CERT.
  • Following a significant increase of 5% over the previous year, the proportion of "Digital Transformation Champions" has reached 16%.
  • The gap between champions and other enterprises has been widen. Strategy, Capability and Value are 3 key areas for companies to focus.
  • 7 imperatives to leapfrogging digital maturity.


Benefited from effective domestic epidemic prevention control, macro economy policy, smart digital tools and resilient supply chain, Chinese enterprises showed strong competitiveness under the pandemic. However due to uncertainties such as geopolitics and global economic trends, Chinese companies are still facing great challenges.

On the other hand, leading by national economic strategies such as "New Infrastructure", "Dual Circulation", and ""The 14th Five-Year Plan for National Economic and Social Development", Chinese enterprises are on a fast track to promote their digital competitiveness. Then how to seize the opportunity and continuously intensify the preponderance?

The gap between champions and other enterprises has been widen, while the champions in China has reached 16%.
The Champions have translated digital advantage into performance advantage

Upon the 2021 China Enterprises Digital Transformation Index Report, the digitalization of all industries has increased steadily in the past four years, with retail and logistics being the most prominent. From a vertical view, as digitalization penetrates across industries, following a significant increase of 5% over the previous year, the proportion of "Champions" with remarkable transformation achievements has reached 16%. The report also reveals that, the digital maturity gap between Champions and the others has been translated into bigger performance advantage, the revenue growth rate gap between the two has been widened from 1.4 times to 3.7 times.

3 obstacles in the transformation journey

The transformation champions showed great resilience and versatile capabilities under the pandemic, which released great anxiety to others. Through executive interviews, we can see that Strategy, Capability and Value are 3 key areas for companies to focus on their transformation journey. Facing aforementioned pain points, the Chinese enterprises need to start seeking new ways to unlock the full value of digital transformation through various sets of solutions.

Strategy Missing

  • The essence of digital transformation is "transformation", the future vision and strategy of the company are absent, and the direction of digitalization is unclear.
  • Although the company’s “top leader” supports it, the business leaders may have different views, and the project is difficult to be implemented.
  • Insufficient digitization and business "grip strength", hard to touch the core

Capabilities Hard to Build

  • The original systems, regulations, and processes are out-of-date, the foundation for digital transformation is not strong, and which is difficult to be established within short term.
  • Talents with business capabilities, wide horizons, digital concepts and skills are extremely demanding.
  • Most digital projects still stay in the pilot stage and those are difficult to be scaled up quickly.

Value Hard to Realize

  • Digital transformation is not just a pure IT transformation, but a full-service and full-function reformation. It's hard to release the value by only some actions.
  • Payback period of investment is long and transformation effects are difficult to be measured, so the value of the projects is questioned, and sustainability is insufficient.

Maximize the value of digital transformation

Facing the digital gap, it’s time for Chinese enterprises to accelerate the process of reforming their business. Through survey, executive interviews, financial and text analysis, Accenture has identified 7 imperatives to leapfrogging digital maturity:

Ensure strategic commitment

Envision and design the top-level digital transformation and perform the end-to-end implementation from strategy, management, execution, operation to evaluation throughout the whole company.

Innovate with Cloud

Adopt cloud technology is the starting point of digital transformation, which enables the improvement of agility and resilience, and innovation at scale with the combination of other emerging technologies.

Establish data strength

Establish and execute strong data strategies and data governance, turning the data assets - these key factors of production - into foresights and differentiating the company.

Drive business of experience

Deploy digital technologies and connected platforms to achieve the industrial integration, cross-company, -department, -function collaboration, client experience upgrade, and business model transformation.

Build future-ready operations

Enhance the automation and intelligence level of operations, effectively use data to support and optimize decision-making, and strengthen human-machine collaboration to achieve high-quality growth.

Harness the power of ecosystem

Explore digital business model through the creation of digital collaboration platforms on which built the ecosystem covering R&D, manufacturing and marketing.

Embrace a broader value agenda

Provide a sound base for aligning business goals with sustainability visions that drive 360-degree value for multiple stakeholders and address various agendas including but not limited to data governance, benefits of various social groups and climate change.

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