2020 has delivered an unforeseen level of disruption, impacting companies across virtually all industries

From natural disasters here in Australia and New Zealand, to social distancing laws in place across most major economies, businesses relied heavily on technology to manage this disruption. Organisations have stopped thinking about disruption as a future possibility and have started planning how to operate in this new digitally driven economy.

What does this mean to organisations already struggling to adopt new and emerging technology in order to not only ensure business continuity but prioritise technology in preparation for a digital future?

Beyond Disruption 2020 Business Pulse

Pulse 4: Recovery and data-driven insights > Key Findings

Pulse 4: Recovery and data-driven insights > Key Recommendations

Pulse 1: Technology adaption > Key Findings & Recommendations

Pulse 2: Investment decisions > Key Findings & Recommendations

Pulse 3: Business resilience > Key Findings & Recommendations

Beyond Disruption consolidated report, including all 4 pulses and overall recommendations > Register now to receive in your inbox

Pulse 4: Recovery and data-driven insights

Identifying shifts in business leaders’ approach to organisational strategy and data-driven insights as they focus on recovery following the disruptions of 2020

Pulse 4: Key findings

Of the many insights uncovered throughout the research,
several key findings were revealed:

1. The road to recovery could be up to three years


of Australian and New Zeland (ANZ) organisations believe it will take 1 to 3 years to fully recover from 2020 disruptions.

2. Organisations anticipate a more productive future, with less operational silos

3 in 5

ANZ organisations expect to see increased productivity in the long term.


have expanded the responsibilities of employees, with many embracing multidisciplinary roles.

3. Organisations have identified four business priorities to support recovery in the next 12 months

Top 4
  • Improving cybersecurity
  • Lowering costs
  • Improving wellbeing programs
  • Increasing skills & training programs

4. Organisations focusing on improving data-driven decision making and analytics strategies


are focused on improving their data and analytics strategy through faster and easier access to trusted data for better decision making.


are focused on improving their analytics capability and data literacy skills across the business.

Pulse 4: Key recommendations

Don’t wait for the next disruption to improve employee and customer engagement

Many organisations were surprised by their ability to adapt to new ways of working during the disruptions of 2020 with many organisations reflecting “what would have taken us two years took two weeks”. It is important to keep up this momentum and continue to consider innovation and explore more productive ways of working throughout the recovery phase and beyond. Organisations should adapt their business and technology strategy with the same sense of urgency that was used during the crisis.

Provide employees with application experiences that make role diversification simpler

Complex and difficult to use applications leave employees spending more time figuring out the functionality rather than achieving business outcomes. Therefore, it is prudent to rationalise core applications and standardise the employee experience within a simple cloud-based platform. This must be supplemented with digital support experiences that employees are seeking such as chat, mobile and peer collaboration. A standardised platform across the organisation will help facilitate the growth of multidisciplinary roles and break operational silos.

Focus on cybersecurity, wellbeing and digital skills and training to fast track recovery

It is clear that resilient employees who can take on new challenges during a disruption will be key to maintaining business continuity in times of uncertainty. Therefore, it’s important to invest in and foster a culture of continuous improvement supported by a broad skills and wellbeing training program with embedded learning pathways that assist employees. Early implementation of these initiatives will help achieve the key business priorities of improving productivity whilst lowering costs.

Implement data governance and operations to lay the foundations for a successful analytics strategy

For organisations to access accurate and timely insights to move their business forward, they must have a solid data governance framework in place that views technology, business objectives and external requirements collectively. Data should be handled as an asset in order to effectively manage and transform it into meaningful insights which allows an organisation to improve operational resilience and drive growth. For an organisation to realise the importance of data governance and management, focusing on building a DataOps culture can create an organistion-wide uplift in data literacy skills and bring people on the journey to transform into a data-driven business.

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Pulse 3: Business resilience

Identifying shifts in business leaders’ adoption of policies and employee programs to ensure business resilience during this crisis

Pulse 3: Key findings

Of the many insights uncovered throughout the research,
several key findings were revealed:

1. Australian and New Zealand (ANZ) organisations ranked top contributors to staying resilient

Top 3
  • Organisational flexibility
  • Employee commitment
  • Leadership and management style

2. Organisations have created a culture of productivity, implementing programs to overcome the disruption


of ANZ organisations cultivated a culture of productivity due to the current disruption, encouraging collaboration and employee commitment towards a shared vision of overcoming the crisis

3. ANZ organisations believe they are managing the crisis well


of large enterprise


of small-medium enterprise (SME)

A greater proportion of large enterprise compared to small-medium enterprise believe they are managing the crisis well, indicating SMEs need more support.


of organisations believe their technology investments have helped them better manage throughout this period.

4. A disconnect in cybersecurity


of ANZ organisations are seeing an increase in cyber-attacks


are offering cybersecurity training for staff, indicating organisations need to take steps to ensure continued resilience and protection

Pulse 3: Key recommendations

Use digital and collaboration tools to enhance employee connectivity and mental health

Continued, long-term remote working can have an impact on overall employee wellbeing. Consider increased use of digital and collaboration tools to monitor, report, and improve employee connectivity and engagement.

Use data insights to recover and grow

Organisations need to effectively gather and harness the power of data and analytics to improve operational resilience, drive growth, increase margins, and revitalise products and services. It is imperative to review your organisation’s data to gain deep insights that will help securely transform and maximise your organisational value.

Develop a digitally engineered enterprise

A rapidly changing world gives organisations the chance to experiment with new business models and processes. Now is the time to look at how your organisation delivers products and services, and consider modern digital techniques around Human Centred Design, Lean/Agile and DevOps to create a more sustainable, faster, and more cost-effective employee and customer experience.

Create a simple security experience for employees

No matter the size or scale of your organisation, it’s critical to have an employee program focused on security. These programs must be further enhanced by embedding security experiences in everyday employee practices. This could be a one-click process for employees to report a suspicious email or a suspected cyber breach. The easier the experience for the employee, the higher the level of organisational compliance and security.

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Pulse 2: Investment decisions

Identifying shifts in business leaders' technology priorities during the disruptions

Pulse 2: Key findings

1. Tech spending is on the rise


increase in technology spending across the business is planned by organisations in Australia and New Zealand


increase in spending for corporations with more than 1,000 employees


2. Fast-tracking for the future


of ANZ organisations with a transformation strategy have fast-tracked technology modernisation, due to the current crisis

3. Focus shifting from customers to employees


of organisations, now trying to manage a remote workforce, have stated that the focus of their transformation efforts will be on employees

4. ANZ organisations now open to new and emerging tech


of ANZ organisations now feel more open to embracing new and emerging technologies

Pulse 2: Key recommendations

Optimise the technology investments you have already made

The technology landscape is changing quickly, and organisations need to find ways to take advantage of that by driving down operational costs through optimisation and commercial means. This should include investing in automation platforms, investigating how differing service provider arrangements might lead to cost benefits at scale, and looking towards consolidating applications wherever appropriate.

Future disruption will be the norm; so focus on resilience and application modernisation

A continuous focus on areas that make the business more resilient such as cyber-security, and modern, flexible applications is paramount. Organisations should ensure they have strategies in place to migrate core applications to cloud- based services. Additionally, through leveraging the power of data and analytics, organisations can inform decision making to support business resiliency.

Double-down on building a secure, scalable and sustainable employee experience

With the new digital reality giving way to the remote worker and flexible ways of working, now is the time to review the products, platforms and processes that are in place to ensure the workplace is secure, scalable and sustainable. Consideration needs to be given to the cultural impact of these changes on the workforce, and ensure well-being, productivity, and overall experience is prioritised as this becomes the new norm for office workers.

Build flexible platforms that allow the rapid exploitation of new technology

Through the disruptions of 2020, technology enabled business continuity, yet now is the time to reinforce the role technology can play into the future. Setting up your technology investments so that they are scalable, modular, and allow easy experimentation of new ideas is critical. Furthermore, it is important to allow employees to be informed and curious about new and emerging technologies and how they can benefit the organisation.

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Pulse 1: Technology adaption

Identifying shifts in business leaders' perspectives on technology during this crisis

Pulse 1: Key findings

1. Technology is critical to managing disruption


of Australian and New Zealand organisations see technology as a key enabler to managing disruption


of businesses are leaning on cloud services and enhanced cybersecurity to make them more resilient in the face of disruption

2. Many organisations have been thrust into completely new ways of working


of organisations allow the majority of staff to work from home in 2020, increasing to 65% for large organisations compared to 7% prior to disruption

3. ANZ organisations are rethinking their business strategy


of organisations are rethinking their business strategy in order to provide a more current technology roadmap

4. Organisational policies for the future are changing now


of businesses are also likely to continue with policies such as enhanced cybersecurity and fraud prevention policies

Pulse 1: Key recommendations

Technology is key to business resilience

Through the disruptions of 2020, technology helped businesses continue to operate, and now is the time to reinforce the role technology can play in the future. Whether this is optimising operations, modernising applications or creating new revenue streams, technology is central to these plans.

Cyber-security needs focus

This disruption has given rise to a threat that was always sitting just beneath the surface. The various rapid deployments required to keep businesses operating have equally left doors ajar for cyber criminals. Businesses need to revisit all current security processes and ensure there are tested recovery plans for business continuity.

Flexible ways of working are here to stay

With decisions made quickly, now is the time to review the products, platforms and processes that are in place to ensure the mobile workplace is secure, scalable and sustainable, Careful consideration needs to be given to the cultural impact of these changes on the workforce as this becomes the new norm for office workers.

Governance and leadership are critical

Boards and Executives must raise their technology literacy and ensure strategies and policies are supportive of the increased dependency on technology. The collaboration and communication approaches developed during the disruptions should be leveraged into the future.

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The pressure placed on organisations in 2020 has motivated business leaders around the world to lean heavily on technology to manage disruption, stay competitive and face the future.

2020 has forced business to modernise with technology much faster than they had planned. Initially this was to cope with the disruptions and keep operating, but now it is seen as a gateway to cost efficiency and new revenue streams.

- Seelan Nayagam, Managing Director, DXC Technology Asia Pacific

About the research

  • In preparing Beyond Disruption 2020, over 150 interviews were conducted for each business pulse for the period between June and August, 2020.
  • The respondent was required to have a strong understanding of their organisation’s IT systems and business policies.
  • Interviews were conducted via an online survey completed by respondents on computers, tablets and smartphones.
  • Receive future Business Pulse findings as they are released

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