Tech innovation spend failing to have a return on investment

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When it comes to business technology investment, it’s not about how much you spend – it’s what you spend it on. This is according to a new report from Accenture, which says that the majority of businesses don’t see a return on their technology investments.

The report states that just 14 per cent of businesses managed to realise the full potential of their tech investments.

Roughly $3.2 trillion were spent on new technology in the last five years. Businesses that were most successful with their investments were the ones investing in ‘bold, watershed moves’, rather than incremental shifts.

Polling C-suite executives for the report, Accenture uncovered that while spending on innovation is increasing, the returns are actually decreasing – ROI is down 27 per cent in the last five years.

More than half of businesses with ‘significant investments’ in innovation are underperforming in terms of growth or market value, and close to a third expect to increase their investments by more than 50 per cent in the next five years. 

“Fortune favours the bold when it comes to investing in innovation,” comments Arabel Bailey, Managing Director UKI and Innovation Lead for Accenture.

“The companies reaping the biggest rewards show a “go big or go home” mentality by investing in truly disruptive innovation projects. They don’t just tinker around the edges.

“The fact that return on investment overall is dropping is a worrying trend. Business are spending more than ever, but their inability to see proper returns is shocking. One of the reasons for this could be that many organisations still see innovation as a peripheral activity separate to the core business; an “ad-hoc creative process” rather than a set of practices that will fundamentally change their way of doing business. It’s like going jogging once a month and then expecting to be able to run a marathon.

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