Board International reveals that despite nearly every global business (Global: 97%; UK: 97%) executing some form of planning transformation attempt since 2020, 90% of businesses (UK: 91%) report it failing to some degree.

The Board Planning Transformation Benchmark Survey asked 2,450 decision makers across the UK, US, Germany, France, Italy, Japan, Australia and Singapore how they are faring in light of a series of economic ‘unprecedented’ events. Just 13% (UK: 12%) said they were unaffected by events, such as Covid-19, the war in Ukraine and the cost-of-living crisis.

Key takeaways from the report:

  • 85% (UK: 78%) of businesses say planning is now taken more seriously across their organisation;
  • 76% (UK: 65%) have seen budgets for planning transformation and planning teams increase;
  • 94% (UK: 90%) are being asked for a more strategic approach to planning by their boards and / or investors.
  • 90% (UK: 91%) of transformations failed for one reason or another. A lack of technical capability within the organisation is cited as the top cause of failed transformations by over a quarter (Global: 26%; UK: 22%) of decision-makers. Lack of investment in skills (Global: 23%; UK: 22%) and scarcity of team resources (Global: 22%; UK: 24%) came in close second and third places.

The report also noted a need to shift from outdated practices such as using spreadsheets like Excel for planning. Planners are taking on average 27 hours (UK: 25 hours) a week to model different scenarios for their business.

When asked if they felt ready to cope with continued supply chain disruption (Global: 29%; UK: 31%), rising interest rates (Global: 22%; UK: 22%), another pandemic (Global: 32%; UK: 35%), or a recession (Global: 34%; UK: 29%), around a third said they were not.

Marco Limena, board CEO said: “With all the uncertainty that we see in the world, business leaders need to recognise a new reality: the era of continuous disruption is here. Those seven words are meant as a wake-up call for organisations to continuously adapt and find new capabilities and efficiencies to deal with today’s challenging environment. Continuous planning is imperative, and the good news is that companies that advance their digital capabilities can steer their business at the speed of change and gain a competitive edge.”

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