In Embracing the Digital Age how are the UAE firms compared with global peers

  • As per the findings of the 2019 Harvey Nash/KPMG Chief Information Officer Survey stated that UAE outperforms its’ global peers’ way much better on an average on most of the capabilities related to digitalization.
  • In embracing the digital age, UAE companies are ahead of their global peers, a trend that’s continuing for more than five years starting 2014.

The 2019 Harvey Nash/KPMG Chief Information Officer Survey stated UAE’s performance much better than its global peers on an average in four out of five technology-related capabilities, that also includes utilization of suitable internal and external resources to access the right technology skills as well as devising newer means of working to extract maximum value from technology.

The survey also added a point that UAE is at par with most of the global organizations when it’s the matter of investing in the digital strategies, as nearly half of the UAE-based firms opt for the employment of a chief digital officer or someone similar handling out a particular role or responsibility for a specific capacity.

Farhan Syed, a partner, Digital & Innovation at KPMG Lower Gulf, stated, “Their study reveals that UAE companies tend to be more effective than their global peers across a range of digital-related capabilities. This in turn especially acts as a great encouragement, as UAE has embarked upon a long-term mission in the transformation of the public and private sectors by the adoption of innovative digital strategies that enhances the customer experience and thereby drive the business efficiency.”

When it comes to adoption of technology, most of the UAE CIOs widely embrace cloud technologies (67 percent) and are in support of implementing more emerging technologies such as robotic process automation (29 percent), and artificial intelligence/machine learning (24 percent).

For the past two years, UAE has fared much better than its global compatriots coming to Data security and trust, as only a paltry 14 percent of the UAE CIOs reported cyber-attacks comparatively to 32 percent of global CIOs. The positive observation that emerged from the report is that nearly a majority of CIOs stated that they believe in their respective organization’s capability of dealing with cyber-attacks currently and in the near future.

The CEO of Harvey Nash, Albert Ellis, stated, “The more brighter fact is that the UAE CIOs are in favour of implementation of the more emerging technologies like AI and Machine Learning being the most significant and as well as emerging as accelerants that when added to the normal evolution of automation proves as an exponential way of changing the pace of change and shortening the life of each separate and incremental innovation.

This point also proves that in the near future, innovation, uniqueness, and flexibility will act as the lifeblood of any business, start-ups, or any entrepreneurship firms, and IT will act as its facilitator. Thus, ’it’s even more important for the CIOs and their IT teams to remain at the crux and shape their heart to be pumped up with these newer technologies, shaping up business and paving the way for a better AI diplomatic front.

Approximately half of UAE CIOs (49 percent) who have surveyed expect a particular surge in their IT budget over the next 12 months, however, slightly lower than the result as expected globally (52 percent).

The survey also showed that CEOs in the UAE are significantly more affectionate towards IT projects, which save them their money (53 percent in the UAE versus 36 percent globally) rather than making money.