A growing number of business leaders are making digital transformation a priority, and those who do so are reaping significant operational and financial benefits, according to a new report by Palo Alto, Calif.-based cloud software and services provider VMware Inc.

According to the company’s latest State of the Digital Workspace report, released Wednesday, 62 per cent of organizations – up from 56 percent in 2015 – now recognize mobility’s potential to transform their businesses and view a lack of adoption as an impediment, while 78 per cent have now successfully executed or are actively pursuing mobile initiatives.

“Organizations understand they must rethink traditional approaches to application delivery and management to stay relevant in an increasingly digital world,” the report’s authors wrote. “A consumer-simple, enterprise-secure digital workspace that unifies user, desktop, and mobile device management to deliver business outcomes can be the foundation for business mobility projects directly linked to process change and innovation.”

VMware’s study found that business mobility investments paid off particularly well, with an average ROI of 150 per cent. Moreover, 48 per cent of organizations that successfully executed mobility initiatives reported an improved ability to rapidly introduce new revenue streams, compared to 34 per cent among organizations which had failed to execute a single initiative.

The more mobility initiatives introduced, the greater the payoff: Among organizations executing 10 or more business mobility initiatives, 52 per cent reported an improved ability to rapidly bring new revenue streams online, while organizations executing fewer than five mobility initiatives only saw an improvement rate of 38 per cent.

To produce the research behind the report, VMware conducted online surveys of 1263 business decision makers and IT influencers, 41 per cent of them VMware customers and 500 from North America – that is, the U.S. and Canada – to examine their progress in transitioning from the client-server era to the mobile-cloud era. (An additional 458 respondents were from Australia, China, Japan, and New Zealand, and 305 were from Europe.)

For the purposes of the survey, VMware defined “digital workspace” as one that enables employees and customers to accomplish work anytime, anywhere across smartphones, tablets, laptops, PCs, and virtual workstations; and that supports critical business processes such as clinical patient care and customer service. Implementing a digital workspace, the authors emphasized, requires coordinated planning and execution involving both IT and business leaders.

The company also recommended that businesses interested in implementing a digital workspace take the following steps:

  1. Invest in user education before implementing software.
  2. Weigh strategic gains higher than cost savings.
  3. Establish a business mobility center of excellence.
  4. Factor in time to assess and properly deploy.

VMware released a handy infographic summarizing the report’s findings, which you can check out below (click for a larger version), or download the report here.

VMWare-2016-state-of-the-digital-workspace-infographgic

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