Think back to 2007. A young U.S. senator named Barack Obama announced his candidacy for president. The housing bubble started to burst. Apple released the first iPhone.
It wasn’t long ago and, yet, in technology terms, it’s almost an eternity — ride- or hotel-sharing companies didn’t exist yet and the first generation of social media platforms were just hitting the mainstream. So much has changed since then. We’ve seen it here at PwC, as well. During the past decade, we surveyed the leaders at the world’s largest companies annually through our Global Digital IQ Survey, tracking their evolving sentiments, priorities, and challenges of how they’re using technology to transform their own businesses.
So what exactly has changed when it comes to digital? A lot. A decade ago, for example, companies were mainly focused on data mining, search technology, and virtual collaboration. Today, executives are directing their energy toward artificial intelligence, machine learning, and the Internet of Things.
In 2007, companies lacked a mobile strategy, let alone a mobile presence for engaging with their customers or for helping employees collaborate. Companies had not yet turned en masse to leverage social platforms like Facebook to advance their business goals. Consumer technology and its potential went largely ignored in the enterprise. Even the word “digital” now means something different. It used to be synonymous with “IT.” Nowadays, a company’s digital strategy practically drives the roadmap and goals of many departments, from marketing to sales to HR.