Organisations that are adopting Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies in finance and operations are growing their annual profits 80 percent faster, according to a new study from Enterprise Strategy Group and Oracle. The global study, Emerging Technologies: The Competitive Edge for Finance and Operations, surveyed 700 finance and operations leaders across 13 countries and found that emerging technologies – AI, Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain, digital assistants – have passed the adoption tipping point, exceed expectations, and create significant competitive advantage for organisations.
AI and Digital Assistants Improve Accuracy and Efficiency in Finance
Organisations embracing emerging technologies in finance are experiencing benefits far greater than anticipated:
• Errors in finance organisations have been reduced by 37 percent on average.
• 72 percent of organisations using AI have a better understanding of overall business performance.
• 83 percent of executives believe AI will completely automate financial close processes within the next five years.
• Digital assistants increase productivity by 36 percent and accelerate financial analysis by 38 percent.
AI, IoT, and Blockchain Drive More Responsive Supply Chains
AI, IoT, blockchain and digital assistants are helping organisations improve accuracy, speed and insight in operations and the supply chain, and respondents expect additional business value as blockchain applications become mainstream.
• Organisations using AI in their supply chains have seen order fulfillment reduction by an average of 6.7 business days.
• Applying IoT data to supply chain processes helps organisations reduce fulfillment errors by 26 percent on average.
• AI is helping organisations reduce fulfillment errors by 25 percent, stock-outs by 30 percent, and manufacturing downtime by 26 percent.
• Organisations using digital assistants in their supply chains have increased employee productivity by 28 percent and the speed of analysis by 26 percent.
• 87 percent of organisations using blockchain have achieved or exceeded ROI expectations; 82 percent expect to see significant business value within the next year.
• 78 percent of executives believe the ability to verify supply chain monitoring with blockchain will reduce incidents of fraud in their supply chain by 50 percent or more over the next five years.
• 68 percent of respondents see increased business intelligence as a key advantage of emerging technology in supply chain operations.
Emerging Tech Equals Competitive Advantage
The vast majority of organisations have now adopted emerging technologies and early adopters (those using three or more solutions) are seeing the greatest benefit and are more likely to outperform competitors.
• Emerging technologies have become mainstream and 84 percent of organisations are using at least one of these technologies (AI, IoT, blockchain, digital assistants) in production.
• 82 percent of organisations using three or more emerging technologies are ahead of competitors, compared to only 45 percent of organisations using none.
• Organisations using multiple emerging technologies are 9.5 times more likely to have market-leading financial and operational accuracy.
• Organisations are 2-3 times more likely to purchase prebuilt emerging technology solutions than build them on their own (percentage varies depending on technology solution).
• Almost all respondents (91 percent) considered SaaS applications to be a key enabler of emerging technology.
“AI, IoT, blockchain and digital assistant capabilities enable organisations to innovate faster, creating significant competitive advantage and driving increased profit for companies embracing those technologies more decisively than their competitors,” said Juergen Lindner, senior vice president, SaaS product marketing, Oracle. “The research finds that these technologies have become mainstream and organisations that sit on the sidelines risk their business relevance. To help our customers outpace change and consequently the competition, we continuously infuse emerging technologies directly into the business processes to ensure they can harness these business-changing technologies.”
“This study makes it clear that emerging technologies have passed the trial phase and are moving toward a state of widespread adoption,” said John McKnight, EVP of Research and Analyst Services of Enterprise Strategy Group. “The business case for these technologies in areas such as finance and operations is maturing at a rapid pace – and in most cases benefits exceed expectations. Furthermore, the research shows that emerging technologies complement and amplify the benefits of one another, which underscores the importance of taking a holistic approach.”