Digital Transformation

26 Recent Digital Transformation Statistics [2020]

August 27, 2020
12:00 am

Digital transformation has been an important business goal for years – there’s hardly an industry to be found that hasn’t tried their hand at applying advanced tech to transform their processes. 

That’s probably why there’s a wealth of research out there producing hundreds of interesting digital transformation statistics – and it keeps evolving as new data comes to light. This research can help your company to:

  • Better understand the digital landscape – especially in a post-COVID-19 world with additional emphasis on remote work and remote selling.
  • Learn what competitors are doing.
  • Figure out which elements of digital transformation have worked (and which have failed).

So, to help you form your own digital strategy – without having to scour through reams of percentages and graphs yourself – we compiled 26 of the most recent facts and statistics on digital transformation, both universal and industry-specific.

26 Digital Transformation Statistics and Facts

The impact of digital transformation

1. In 2019, digital-first companies were 64 percent more likely than their peers to have exceeded their top 2018 business goal. (Adobe & Econsultancy)

2. Forty-five percent of companies reporting a positive business impact of digital transformation also reported higher net revenue growth. (Deloitte)

3. Seventy-six percent of executives agree that organizations need to dramatically reengineer the experiences that bring technology and people together in a more human-centric manner. (Accenture)

4. While 52 percent of companies plan to cut or defer investments because of COVID-19, just nine percent will make those cuts in digital transformation. (PwC)

Factsheet: Digital Transformation by the Numbers

Don’t have time to make sense of the stats? Get the gist and four key takeaways to peruse at your own pace.

Download Factsheet

How are companies faring with digital transformation?

5. Although 87 percent of senior business leaders say digitalization is a company priority, only 40 percent of organizations have brought digital initiatives to scale. (Gartner)

6. Most companies are using technology to modernize their existing business model instead of transforming it. (Forrester)

7. The digital transformation market is expected to grow at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 22.7 percent from 2019 to $3,294 billion by 2025. (Research and Markets)

Are there digital transformation failure statistics? 

8. Just 16 percent of executives say their company’s digital transformation efforts are succeeding. (McKinsey)

9. Seventy-two percent of strategists say their company’s digital efforts are missing revenue expectations. (Gartner)

The stakeholders of digital transformation efforts

10. In 37 percent of companies, CIOs lead transformation, while in 12 percent of companies, CMOs do. (Forrester)

11. Eighty-nine percent of CIOs say they’re more involved in leading digital transformation initiatives compared to their business counterparts (and 56 percent of counterparts agree). (IDG)

12. For 39 percent of CIOs, digital transformation is the most important task given to them by their CEO. (IDG)

Best practices of digital transformation

13. Companies that use the Digital Factory approach report faster product launches, better customer experiences, and reduced tech development costs. (McKinsey)

14. Companies that get significant value on their digital investments invest 33 percent more than other companies in technology, processes, operating models, and the ways of working that will drive their digital supremacy. (PwC)

15. Companies move twice as fast on digital transformation when there is a shared understanding — among senior leaders, strategists and the organization as a whole — of the digital path ahead. (Gartner

16. Organizations using a step-by-step approach to digital transformation (having one foot in the existing business model while trying a new one) have reported only a 16 percent progress toward business change objectives, despite having worked toward business model transformation for 12 months. (Gartner)

17. On average, higher-maturity organizations’ digital transformation efforts are twice as broad as those at lower-maturity organizations (maturity is defined as the level of benefit derived from digital transformation efforts). (Deloitte)

Additional facts and digital transformation statistics

18. More than a third of CIOs anticipate difficulty in finding appropriate skillsets in the tech areas of cybersecurity and data science. (IDG)

19. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, companies are moving previously on-premise tech to the cloud, and the migrated systems could remain there permanently. (Forrester)

20. Internet of Things (IoT) had the largest share of the overall digital transformation market in 2019, but AR/VR technology is predicted to have the fastest growth until 2025. (Research and Markets)

Banking and Insurance

21. Only 34 percent of banks and insurers are including marketing in their transformation efforts. (Forrester)

22. Eighty-one percent of insurers acknowledge that technology has become an inextricable part of the human experience. (Accenture)


23. During the 2020 pandemic, there was a 15 percentage point increase in use of digital tools for health support by consumers. And, 37 percent of consumers are very likely to use telehealth in the future. (McKinsey)

Ecommerce and Retail

24. Retailers increased funding to e-commerce in Q2 of 2020 because of the pandemic. Additionally, social commerce startups, resale platforms, and virtual shopping tools all received attention to improve the online shopping experience. (CBInsights)

25. AI, IoT, AR/VE, and cloud are growing trends in retail, (maybe even accelerated as a result of the pandemic). (Technavio via BusinessWire)

Real estate

26. Construction technology, AI, and Big Data analytics are the top three biggest disruptors in the real estate industry (Pwc Canada)

5 key takeaways from these digital transformation statistics

  • Digital transformation is a must, but it is also a competitive advantage. This is because, despite the necessity of using technology to transform their business, the majority of companies have yet to complete their digital transformation plans or formulate an effective strategy that scales.
  • CIOs are the owners of digital transformation efforts, but they’re not alone. This means your business probably needs a dedicated leader for digital strategy, but, that doesn’t mean they should do the job on their own. Getting buy-in, support, and help from other leaders or employees – and ensuring a common understanding of digital efforts – is essential. Harvard Business Review calls this “leveraging insiders”: taking advantage of the knowledge of employees on what works and what doesn’t.
  • Distinguish between modernization/optimization and transformation. Modernizing your business processes is a big advantage, but that’s not all digital transformation is. As a recent Forrester article states, executives should differentiate between “tactical digital investments” and “forward-looking investments to build revenue-generating digital products.”
  • Think hard about your best course of action. For example, define the desirable future of your business without concerning yourself with the present. This is a recommendation based on Gartner’s findings about organizations that progress faster to a business model change by not doing it step-by-step. And, of course, as is evident from the stats, prepare to invest a generous chunk of your budget to your digital transformation efforts. 
  • Be customer-centric in your efforts. Digital transformation goals can be about your internal processes and productivity. But, the ultimate purpose is to be able to connect with and engage your customers. As Accenture suggests in its 2020 Technology Vision report, you can redesign the digital experiences you offer to turn passive audiences into active participants and co-creators of their relationship with your brand (e.g. by taking advantage of AI, VR, IoT).

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