More than one-in-four (27%) UK business leaders believe a lack of digital and data skills within their organisation is hampering their ability to deliver engaging, personalised experiences for customers.
So says the latest installment of Adobe’s Mind the Data Gap Report, in which 22% of respondents blamed a lack of a data-centric culture and 24% identified the absence of a unified technology platform as the biggest obstacles.
Based on a poll of 750 business leaders, the report argues that the only way for businesses to meet rising customer expectations, especially in terms of customer experience, is to improve, both technologically and organisationally.
One often touted solution to analysing and organising large amounts of data at speed is artificial intelligence. However, only just over a third (34%) of respondents were deploying AI to deliver personalised customer experiences while nearly a quarter (24%) said they had no plans to use the technology.
The reasons behind this are two-fold. Two-fifths (41%) said the platform they used could not stitch together customer data in realtime and only 15% were confident that AI was effectively embedded into their technology stack.
Nevertheless, business leaders are in no doubt of the importance of delivering personalisation at scale. When asked about their strategic priorities for 2020, UK chiefs identified gaining realtime customer intelligence (46%), and improving customer segmentation and targeting (40%) as the top areas to improve.
There is, however, room for improvement in data management. While many are collecting data from their customers, just 19% of businesses are confident they can aggregate online and offline data. Furthermore, only 17% are implementing good data governance practices, such as cleaning and standardising the data sets they have.
Adobe EMEA region vice-president Gavin Mee said: “Today’s consumer is all about speed and convenience. They share data with brands on the understanding that they will have a more personalised experience in future. Our figures should act as a wake-up call for businesses.
“They need to refocus their efforts on delivering against the heightened expectations of their customers. Having the right skills to capture and analyse data is important. However, instilling a data-centric culture across the business, means insights and technology platforms are used to create amazing, personalised experiences.”