Three in ten UK businesses abandoned IT projects during pandemic

Business tips

A new survey of UK business leaders has revealed the successes and failures of business’ digital transformation journeys during the pandemic.

The London-based digital agency commissioned an independent survey of 750 decision-makers within UK businesses. It found that the majority (56%) of businesses have successfully adopted one or more new technologies since the beginning of the pandemic, with 54% saying that using new tech has been key in enabling them to overcome challenges posed by Covid-19. 

However, 30% revealed they have scrapped one or more unsuccessful digital transformation projects that were launched since the beginning of the pandemic. 

When asked about the challenges of adopting new technologies, 28% of decision-makers admitted that their business lacks the skills to do so, while 29% said they struggle to keep pace with technological developments. Over a fifth (23%) are disappointed in the way their business has handled IT projects during the pandemic. 

Nevertheless, Studio Graphene’s research showed that 65% of UK companies plan to increase the amount they spend on IT in the coming 12 months, and 62% plan to launch new digital transformation projects. 

Ritam Gandhi, founder and director of Studio Graphene, said: 

“Failure is part and parcel of innovation, so these findings should not discourage businesses that are working to upgrade their technology. Indeed, business leaders have faced huge challenges in adapting to the Covid crisis, so it is promising to see the majority of companies have successfully adopted new digital tools.

“When Studio Graphene surveyed 750 UK business leaders in 2019, 45% of respondent said that their organisation was too risk-averse to embrace new technologies, with this figure jumping to 70% of those in large businesses. Clearly, the pandemic has changed the picture dramatically; today, businesses of all sizes are embracing a more open and experimentation mindset. 

“It’s great to see that confidence has not been knocked by the unsuccessful turnout of some IT projects, with the vast majority planning to ramp up their tech investment over the coming 12 months. In trying new projects, even those that failed, businesses will have learned valuable lessons that they can carry into their future digital transformation – they will be better for the experience.”

Chris Price
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