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India's CIOs to Invest More in Technologies By 56 Percent: Dun & Bradstreet

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Dun & Bradstreet, a leading global provider of B2B data, insights and AI-driven platforms, recently published a survey-based study titled 'Smart Digital Transformation: How CIOs are Leading Their Organization's Data Strategy'. The study revealed that CIOs plan to invest 56 percent in technology innovations showing that improved technology and data quality have moved from ‘nice-to-have’ to ‘must-have’ status in recent years.

It includes responses from 250 Chief Information Officers (CIOs) from businesses with a revenue of more than INR 5 billion, from 10 sectors and six major cities in India.

The survey demonstrates that business leaders now recognize COVID-19 as a long-term challenge. As part of their long-term sustainability efforts, the CIOs are prioritizing and preparing improvements to technology, data quality and automation capabilities to help them handle potential disruption caused by the pandemic.

Data protection for the overall enterprise is shown to be the top priority for 52 percent of CIOs, followed by allowing remote workers for 48 percent of CIOs as companies embrace rapid digital transformation. During the first wave of COVID-19, 46 percent of CIOs focused on digital customer service.

Key Findings Showcasing Measures Taken to Navigate COVID-19 Disruption


•Nearly 60 percent of responding CIOs reported that their business unit received at least 10percent of total revenue in which 33 percent of CIOs stated that their business unit received more than 20 percent of total revenue.


59 percent of CIOs expect their department's budget to stay the same after COVID-19, while 10 percent expect an increase and 31percent expect their department's budget to decrease after COVID-19.


•The crisis-driven incentive to create value even outweighs more conventional CIO priorities like improving operating performance and lowering costs. CIOs who responded said they spend 55 percent of their time on value development for their companies, compared to 40 percent who said they spend their time on cost savings.

Data Collection and Data Management Challenges


•In order to address data processing problems, 56 percent of CIOs expect to invest in more innovations, showing that improved technology and data quality have moved from 'nice-to-have' to 'must-have' status in recent years. 49 percent of CIOs intend to hire more data experts to combat data management problems, while 32 percent plan to outsource data management to a third party.


•Data tracking (web database) is used by 53 percent of CIOs to collect data, while 31percent collect data from primary methods and 27 percent collect data from third parties such as data service providers and social media. Furthermore, 26 percent of CIOs get their data from websites, cookies, and web beacons.


52 percent of CIOs cited real-time data analytics as an issue, followed by data protection, which was cited by 50 percent of CIOs.


Two out of five CIOs agree that their company is having trouble harnessing the full potential of data.

In terms of automation, future technologies and skills the study indicated that 43 percent of CIOs do not use automation currently, with 24 percent eager to pursue it without hesitation. 14 percent are unwilling to try and the remaining five percent reluctant but willing to try.

“CIOs are playing a pivotal role in navigating businesses through the current challenging times, while also ensuring to embrace the new normal in the connected world. With digitisation, the rate of data generation has increased considerably. Our survey indicates that most of the Indian companies (57 percent) are embracing automation for managing and refreshing data to ensure there is always Live Data available for business decisions. Further, 30 percent of them believe that Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning will be the most likely technology that they would adopt soon”, said Avinash Gupta, Managing Director and CEO, Dun & Bradstreet India.

Dr. Arun Singh, Global Chief Economist, Dun & Bradstreet explained that, “as businesses were pushed to digitize almost overnight, their legacy systems were not adequately equipped to manage the volume and velocity of the data explosion that we are witnessing today. Our interaction with the CIO fraternity indicated that lack of technology maturity and delay in investment towards evolving data management practices are preventing them from exploring the full potential of data. Most businesses are struggling with real-time data analytics and management. High cost of data solutions, poor data quality, data integration issues, concerns with processing large datasets and handling constantly changing data are some of the core issues. It is now evident that an increasing percentage of CIOs are now realizing the need to invest in technologies to improve the data management practices”.

Furthermore, CIOs are becoming more aware of the opportunities lost due to poor data quality, as opposed to a memorable customer experience provided by good data collection and management activities. This is also reflected in their radical turn away from cost-cutting as their primary goal. CIOs are currently devoting 55 percent of their time to business value growth, according to the survey.

“CIOs are playing a pivotal role in navigating businesses through the current challenging times, while also ensuring to embrace the new normal in the connected world. With digitization, the rate of data generation has increased considerably. Our survey indicates that most of the Indian companies (57 percent) are embracing automation for managing and refreshing data to ensure there is always Live Data available for business decisions. Further, 30 percent of them believe that Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning will be the most likely technology that they would adopt soon”, said Avinash Gupta, Managing Director and CEO, Dun & Bradstreet India.

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