PHILADELPHIA, EMC Booth #825 - March 31, 2009 -
EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC), the world leader in information infrastructure solutions, today at the AIIM International Exposition and Conference announced the results of a new research paper by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) and sponsored by EMC. The study finds that organizational agility is critical for successful businesses today, especially in the current economic climate. According to the study, 81 percent of respondents view knowledge management and collaboration as the main drivers for increased productivity, enhanced performance and rapid innovation.
The report, Organizational Agility: How Businesses Can Survive and Thrive in Turbulent Times, is based on an EIU research survey of more than 300 senior executives from leading companies around the world. According to the report, 88% of respondents – including half of all CEOs and CIOs -- believe organizational agility is crucial for global business success. However, more than 27% place their organization at a competitive disadvantage because it lacks the agility to anticipate fundamental marketplace shifts.
"To be competitive, companies may find themselves in a Houdini-like twist. How can they respond quickly and nimbly to the changing environment without getting caught in knots? In today’s knowledge age, the ability to turn information into insight in response to market movements is core to sustainability," the report says. "For most companies, the path to agility involves transformation. While it may appear daunting, there are a number of steps that management can consider to lighten the burden of change, including: Optimizing core business processes, minimizing information silos and integrating and automating knowledge sharing processes."
A majority of respondents believe IT will act as the agent of change for best-in-class knowledge-sharing and business agility. Executives point to faster access to real-time information (45%), improved search functionality (38%) and better integration of IT systems across the enterprise (38%) as key enablers of business agility. A large number surveyed report that tools enabling them to find, filter and focus content are critical drivers for business success.
Most report that processes such as knowledge management and collaboration – as well as those able to pull data from multiple applications used for research and development and product/service innovation – will drive agility and innovation.
"Companies today are looking for ways to remain competitive and retain high-value customers while budgets are shrinking beneath them," said Whitney Tidmarsh, Chief Marketing Officer of the Content Management and Archiving Division at EMC. "The key to organizational agility is minimizing expensive redundancies and optimizing core processes. By more effectively integrating a broad range of enterprise content management solutions – including knowledge management and collaboration systems -- into the information infrastructure and the business, key information can be more readily accessible to decision-makers. This improves their overall ability to problem-solve, communicate rapidly with customers, make quick decisions, and convert information into intelligence."
Taking a step back, the survey reports that while many respondents have undertaken agility initiatives, not all of them succeed. More than 80% of respondents claim to have undertaken one or more initiatives to improve agility over the past three years, yet 34% admitted those initiatives failed due to slow decision-making, conflicting departmental goals and priorities, risk-averse cultures and silo-based information. Additionally, 52% admitted to having wasted valuable time hunting for business-critical content, hindering their ability to make business decisions in a rapid fashion.
The EIU survey took place between December 2008 and January 2009, and included responses from 349 business executives around the world. Executives from 19 different industries took part in the survey, 44% of whom had revenues of $500 million or less and 31% with revenues of $5 billion or more. Board members and C-level respondents comprised 43% of respondents, while senior directors and department heads made up an additional 31%. The survey included responses from a range of business functions and industries.
Organizational Agility: How Businesses Can Survive and Thrive in Turbulent Times is an Economist Intelligence Unit briefing paper sponsored by EMC. The paper is available for free download at http://www.emc.com/collateral/leadership/organisational-agility-230309.pdf
More information on EMC’s activities at the AIIM International Exposition and Conference can be found here: http://www.dellemc.com/en-us/corporate/newsroom/announcements/2009/03/20090331-01.htm
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