A recently released white paper has disclosed that for 2018, the ranking of the Philippines in the aspect of digital transformation has remained stagnant.
Despite having advanced technologies such as 5G and artificial intelligence (AI) knocking at the country’s door, the Philippines got a 12.8 score in the index ranking, besting only Indonesia, which came in last with a score of 12.2.
The leaders in the ranking were Singapore with a score of 78 and Japan with a score of 63.5. The ranking of Singapore remained unchanged while Japan moved up a notch.
Only South Korea declined in the index and slipped two notches to 4th overall.
Based on the study, fostering digital transformation requires more than deploying new technologies.
Asian leaders aspire to create environments in which businesses and other organisations can leverage a range of assets to achieve far-reaching change through digitisation.
Comparing their progress is the objective of the Asian Digital Transformation Index.
The index focused on three areas to measure digital transformation. These are digital infrastructure, human capital, and industry connectivity.
Digital infrastructure refers to the reliability, speed and affordability of digital connectivity, as well as other factors that create a positive environment for digital transformation.
The human capital category seeks to measure a country’s performance according to the quality and quantity of people that can create digital transformation environments.
The last category aims to gauge the performance of the countries in their ability to absorb and benefit from digital technology that is available in the market.
For digital infrastructure, the Philippines ranked 11th, with a score of 9.7. It slipped one notch whereas countries like India improved four notches and Japan, two notches.
Moreover, data revealed that only 4% of homes and buildings in the Philippines have superfast connectivity.
This is a far cry from Singapore’s 97%; mainland China’s 77%; and Hong Kong’s 74%.
In terms of human capital, the white paper indicated that the performance of the Philippines remained stagnant at 9th overall with a score of 20.4.
In addition, data revealed that telecommunication professionals in the Philippines only account for 1% of the work force.
The telecommunication professionals in other countries like Singapore and Hong Kong, however, account for 8% and 5% of the work force, respectively.
Unfortunately, the country’s ranking went down two notches to last place in terms of industry connectivity, with a score of 11.3.
The organisation explained that foremost among these were big data and analytics, while mobile apps and services, mobile services and cloud computing, along with cyber security tools, were also high on their priority list.
Furthermore, large numbers pointed to AI, robotics and the Internet of Things (IoT).
In order to generate the desired benefits, these technologies need to be used in combinations.
It is the ability of firms to use these in an integrated manner, which will determine the scale of their contribution to digital transformation.
The success of a country’s digital transformation lies in changing employee mindsets and organisational culture, as much as access to technology and specialists, as reiterated by the white paper.
Nonetheless, the organisation claimed that Asian countries have companies with senior managers who are as able as those in Western countries to bring about technological change.