According to survey data from the 2017 Harvey Nash/ KPMG CIO Survey, 46% of Chief Information Officers in the APAC region report they are currently investing in, or plan to invest in digital labour, cognitive automation or robotic process automation.
The data also showed that despite 68% of APAC organisations adapting their technology strategy because of unprecedented global political and economic uncertainty, 89% are maintaining or ramping up investment in innovation, including in digital labour.
"Technological advances are occurring at an astonishing pace, coupled with the ever changing political and economic landscape, we are living in very exciting, yet unpredictable, times,” Nick Marsh, Managing Director, Harvey Nash Executive Search APAC said. “The 2017 Harvey Nash/KPMG CIO Survey highlights that many technology executives are turning this uncertainty into opportunity and are becoming the driving force in making their organisation more nimble, and digitally innovative. Technology leaders are becoming increasingly influential, as CEOs and boards turn to them for help in navigating through these uncertain times."
Harvey Nash’s data also showed that cyber security vulnerability is at an all-time high, with 36% of APAC IT leaders reporting their organisation had been subject to a major cyber-attack in the past 24 months - an increase of 4% since last year. Across the region, 20% say they are "very well" prepared to respond to these attacks, with 15% of IT leaders reporting they feel exposed and not at all prepared to deal with cyber-attacks. The biggest jump in threats comes from insider attacks, increasing from 40% to 47%
"Organisations have moved on from a world of strategizing and talking about digital, to one in which they are actually making it happen: we are now seeing widespread and active implementation," Ram Lakshminarayanan, Partner, Management Consulting at KPMG in Singapore, said. "However, those organisations which we have identified as digital leaders tend to be much more focused on innovation and growth, they have higher levels of IT spend, and are much more likely to make aggressive investments in disruptive digital technologies such as digital labour, in some cases at twice the rate of all other organisations."