Irish businesses must close digitalisation gap with European peers, report finds

Retail banks and telecommunications companies rank as the most digitally mature companies in Ireland

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6 June 2019 | 0

Digitalisation must be prioritised by Irish businesses in order to compete at an international level, according to BearingPoint’s ‘Digital Leaders in Ireland 2019’ study.

The report assessed the digital maturity of 62 Irish companies on six metrics of digitalisation: digital marketing, digital product experience, e-commerce, e-CRM, mobile and social media, and then compared the results to 600 European competitors.

Banks and telecommunications were found to be the most digitally mature in Ireland. Bank of Ireland, KBC, Sky Ireland and Vodafone Ireland were among the highest performers.

Irish businesses performed well in terms of social media and mobile, particularly in manufacturing (Ardagh Group, Transitions Optical), media (The Irish Times, INM, RTÉ) and food product industries (Glanbia, Kerry Group).

In certain areas, digital maturity was high on a national level, yet there is a gap between the overall performance of Irish businesses and the average standard for their European peer group.

The report finds that, despite showing strong digital efforts, all Irish companies would benefit from greater digitalisation as it would boost differentiation, secure market leadership positions and improve international competitiveness.

Commenting on the report Eric Conway, partner and country leader at BearingPoint Ireland, said: “Although Irish businesses have some work to do to match the digital maturity of their European peers,” he considers our strength in social media and mobile promising. “These two areas are particularly subject to technology evolution and change, so strong performance in these areas is key to remaining relevant and showing sustainable progress.”

“The most important thing is that Irish businesses remain open to the adoption of new technologies and digitally-enabled processes. Irish businesses certainly have the potential to compete digitally at an international level, which we can see from the results in the retail bank and telecommunications industries.

“Companies that actively implement strategies to improve the level of digitalisation across their business are those that will successfully move up the ranks and achieve highest performance,” said Conway.

Research was conducted by the management and technology consultancy to better understand how Irish companies are digitally maturing across multiple industries and to identify the opportunities and challenges which spur from digitalised customer-facing processes.

Energy, transport, insurance and retail industries were also examined in the report.

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