New poll from Microsoft Canada reveals a gap between what business leaders say is good for business and what they do

TORONTO, February 10, 2022 /CNW/ – Nearly two-thirds (61%) of Canadian business leaders agree that data – and knowing how to learn actionable insights from it – is critical to a company’s success in the economy today. However, only around a third (34%) say their company has a comprehensive data strategy in place and even fewer (31%) consider their organization to be a data-driven company. These are some of the key findings from a new survey from Microsoft Canada, exploring whether business leaders are effectively leveraging data to drive growth and innovation, stay competitive and improve customer experience.

Microsoft surveyed 658 business decision makers from Canadian organizations, including public sector, private sector, and not-for-profit organizations and ranging from micro (less than 10 employees) to large enterprises (500+ employees).

The survey revealed that there is a significant gap between what business leaders say they need to be successful and what they do to achieve it. For example, while 71% of respondents say their company is either on par with the industry or a leader in its level of digital sophistication, only 4 in 10 say their organization currently uses the cloud. This, despite the near-consensus from global consulting firms that the cloud is essential to meet the demands of a modern enterprise. In fact, in a recent study, Deloitte found that cloud adoption is a competitive necessity in today’s economy. Along with low cloud adoption, only a few respondents (34%) in the Microsoft study indicate that making better use of the data they have will be a priority for their organization in the coming year.

“Data has become the most valuable currency for organizations in a cloud-driven digital world,” said Kevin Peesker, president of Microsoft Canada. “Regardless of size or type of organization, leveraging AI, data and analytics is crucial for Canadian organizations to drive innovation, meet changing customer demands and ultimately ultimately, to remain competitive in the global economy as we continue to recover from the pandemic.

ENABLING CANADIAN ORGANIZATIONS TO MAKE THE MOST OF THEIR DATA
While nearly half (46%) of survey respondents say their organization aims to become more data savvy, only 34% currently use data analytics tools or services. Additionally, among those who do not use data analytics tools or services, less than a fifth (18%) plan to adopt such tools in 2022.

“What the results reveal about how most business leaders prioritize data as part of their digital strategy is alarming,” Peesker says. “Many organizations have invested in technologies such as cloud and AI to manage disruptions in response to the pandemic. Time to impact, innovation and secure scalability have proven themselves. It is now essential for these organizations to optimize their investments to enable true digital transformation. This means extracting the right insights from the wealth of data available to them so they can compete in their industry and globally.”

Last March, Microsoft announced the creation of the Data Innovation Center of Excellence (DICE) as part of its new Toronto opening of the head office this year. DICE, Microsoft’s first-of-its-kind dedicated data and innovation center, will help Canadian private, public, and not-for-profit organizations harness the power of data and cloud technology to accelerate their digital transformation and co- innovate on cutting-edge solutions. To better meet the unique needs of government customers and partners, Microsoft has established the Microsoft Government Innovation Center located at Ottawa.

“Organizations that use their own data to implement solutions tailored to their specific needs can not only build business resilience, but also improve operations and become more responsive to changing citizen and customer demands. “said Peesker. “With DICE, we empower organizations to leverage the data they create to develop comprehensive strategies that solve some of their most pressing business challenges and accelerate their growth.”

To learn more about Microsoft’s data capabilities in Canadavisit aka.ms/DataInnovation.

ABOUT THE SURVEY
These results are taken from a survey conducted by Fuse Insights on behalf of Microsoft Canada. A total of 658 business decision makers from all over Canadarepresenting a range of company sizes and industries, were interviewed online in English and French in December 2021.

ABOUT MICROSOFT CANADA
Founded in 1985, Microsoft Canada Inc. is the Canadian subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation (Nasdaq “MSFT”), the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential. Microsoft Canada provides nationwide sales, marketing, consulting and local support services in English and French. For more information about Microsoft Canada, please visit www.microsoft.ca.

SOURCEMicrosoft Canada Inc.

For more information: Sachin Persaud, Veritas Communications, [email protected]

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