19th Annual Global CEO Survey

Technology remains key to business success

Technology remains key to business success

No matter what your business, technology has changed the way we work. In this film, we hear from four CEOs to understand their views on why technology remains key to business success. Hear from Ian McCaig, CEO, First Utility, Richard Pennycook, CEO, Co-operative Group, Nigel Wilson, CEO, Legal & General and Stephen Kelly, CEO, Sage. 

As technology changes, are you adapting your business strategies and applying technology to how you make it work better for you? Is your industry one of the pioneers in technological adoption or are you falling behind? These are the types of questions you should be asking yourself as we navigate through the digital era.


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"One of the features of the 21st century and the digital revolution has been that the value of data has never been greater. But equally, that means the value of it to others who can defraud organisations, has never been greater.”

Richard Pennycook
CEO, Co-operative Group

A consistent theme of the Annual Global CEO Survey in recent years has been the impact of technological change as a driver of business disruption and growth. This year’s findings maintain this theme, but with some interesting nuances, such as the increased concern around cyber security.

Using technology to meet the requirements of various stakeholders is a key priority for UK CEOs with 95% stating they are changing how they use technology to assess and deliver on wider stakeholder expectations, compared to 90% globally. A large proportion of UK CEOs, 86%, are also looking ahead and say that technological advances will be the global trend most likely to transform those stakeholder expectations over the course of the next five years, compared with 77% globally.

At the same time, UK CEOs are becoming more relaxed about the speed of technological change, with 56% citing this as a concern, down from 59% last year, and well below this year’s global figure of 61%. This means UK business leaders’ concern over the pace of advances in technology is now back down to roughly the same level as in 2013, while during the same two-year period the level of concern globally over the speed of technological change has surged from 47% to 61%.

An intensifying focus on cyber threats

One area where UK CEOs are increasingly vigilant, is cyber security. Just 25% say they are not concerned about cyber threats, down from 31% last year, and well below the global average of 38%.

Correspondingly, the proportion of UK CEOs saying cyber threats are a concern has risen to 75%  from 67% last year, against a global figure that has remained unchanged at 61%. The US exhibits the highest level of concern with 88% of its CEOs voicing concern over cyber threats, while the figure among Italian CEOs is only 42%, and Spain 43%.

"In terms of the technological developments, actually that gives you the reach into other parts of the UK without having the physical presence that historically banks, building societies might have felt they had to have to be able to reach consumers.  So the world's changed quite dramatically in that sense."

Graeme Yorston

Contact us

Contact us

Maria Jennings
Head of UK Thought Leadership
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7804 3682

Katrina Kersey
Marketing manager
Tel: +44 (0)207 212 2279