Are tech firms getting value from their investments in disruptive technologies? Are they placing too much priority on today’s “table stakes” like D&A, cloud and mobile? Or are they risking it all on future stars, such as robotics, virtual and augmented reality and 3D printing?
Building on data and insights from our research, we evaluated 13 disruptive technologies using the following metrics: impact on operations, impact on business models and level of investment.
Combining these three metrics we have created a framework: the disruptive technology value map to help tech sector leaders guide investment decisions on disruptive technologies.
Companies can benchmark themselves against their peers to prioritize different disruptive technologies. Disruptive technologies fall into five key categories, based upon the investment-versus-impact model:
The speed at which new disruptive technologies emerge, and the wide choice of ever-changing options, creates a dilemma for technology leaders. Do they spread their bets – and risk having their efforts diluted? Or do they focus on a few selected technologies – and risk choosing the wrong ones? And should they aim to be first-movers – or take a more cautious ‘wait and see’ approach?
Some 38 percent of respondents whose companies have suffered from disruptive technology admit that they saw trends coming too late. Conversely, 54 percent of those who say disruptive technologies are helping their business, claim they invested in the new technology trend earlier than their competitors – and 46 percent invested at an earlier stage than their peers.
Whether tech businesses want to be first movers or fast followers, they need, above all, to be agile, to ensure they don’t get left behind by others making better use of new technologies.