Majority of Dutch companies see themselves as a digital beginner

The majority of Dutch companies see themselves as a 'digital beginner'. In the Netherlands we are still reluctant to take advantage of the opportunities of the so-called fourth industrial revolution, Industry 4.0. This becomes evident from the Strategy& Global Digital Operations Study 2018, part of the accounting and consultancy firm PwC.

For the survey, we interviewed more than 1,100 drivers in the manufacturing industry in 26 countries. Based on this, we developed an index that rankes companies according to 'digital maturity': from digital novices, digital followers and digital innovators to digital champions. Three-quarters of Dutch respondents see themselves as a digital beginner.

The Netherlands is lagging behind Asia

'This is in line with my conversations with leaders within the Dutch industry. They confirm this observation', says Bas Weber, Industry 4.0 Lead at PwC. As far as Weber is concerned, Dutch companies must set to work in the coming years so that the gap with Asian companies in particular will not become unbridgeable.

Compared to the rest of the world, Dutch industry is now less optimistic about the expected revenue growth and the efficiency gains that can be derived from investments in digital technologies. In addition, Dutch companies prefer to spend money on technologies that have a proven track record (internet of things, manufacturing execution systems, predictive maintenance) than in new emerging technologies (artificial intelligence, blockchain, virtual reality).

Question: To what extend have you implemented the following technologies within your company?


The Netherlands reluctant to seize opportunities

Where the Netherlands is reluctant to take advantage of the opportunities of the fourth industrial revolution, Asia is well on their way to becoming the world leader. As many as a third of Asian companies will be using mature, digital ecosystems in the next five years. These are systems in which multiple partners have linked their value chains with the help of new technologies. In the Americas that is a around 25% and in Europe only 15%.

Turning opportunities into strategic advantage

'The Netherlands has been lagging behind for years when you look at the speed with which the opportunities offered by Industry 4.0 are converted into a strategic advantage. While we have an excellent starting position through, among other things, our high-quality ICT infrastructure and world-class top sectors. '

Would you like to know how your company becomes a digital champion? Then please read our publication.

Contact us

Bas Weber

Bas Weber

Partner, PwC Netherlands

Tel: +31 (0)61 037 60 45

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