Cisco Canada survey reveals innovation is not a priority for most Canadian organizations

Cisco Canada and Angus Reid have released a survey which revealed that Canadian organizations are struggling to ramp up their investments in innovation.

The country is falling behind the rest of the world as a consequence. According to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Canada is behind in its innovation and R&D investments, compared to other countries. Additionally, The Conference Board of Canada gave Canada a “C” rating in its 2021 Innovation Report Card, stating: “Canada continues to exhibit relatively weak innovation performance.”

Just a third of businesses in Canada reported considering investment in technology infrastructure a priority this year, and only 27 percent said they are considering digitizing business processes.

The study revealed that, rather than technology and innovation, companies with over 1,000 employees are prioritizing employee retention and talent acquisition. Smaller organizations are prioritizing customer acquisition and client retention.

The study showed that technology infrastructure, digitizing/automating business processes, and updating a legacy technology stack were quite low on the list of priorities, even in organizations that value technology.

While some organizations are investing in technology, only 16 percent of respondents noted that they are investing significantly more in technology infrastructure and innovation than in the previous year.

Cisco Canada also asked respondents about their investments in sustainability.

Only 25 percent of respondents said they prioritize environmental sustainability a great deal. Almost half of respondents said they ‘somewhat’ prioritize environmental sustainability; organizations with over 1,000 employees seem to value and prioritize the environment sustainability more.

While sustainability has increased in importance for many businesses, they still face barriers to promoting it within their organization. Some of these barriers include lack of budget and lack of time. Fifty-eight percent of respondents said technology is very/somewhat important to meeting environmental sustainability goals at their business.

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