Technology Modernization Jumps to the Top of their Agendas as Singapore and Global CEOs Look to Embrace Generative AI

Learn why Singaporean CEOs prioritize these initiatives, the challenges they face, and the impact on customer experience and workforce.

In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, technology modernization has emerged as a top priority for CEOs in Singapore. A recent global study conducted by the IBM Institute for Business Value reveals that over half of the Singaporean CEOs surveyed consider technology modernization as their highest business priority. The key findings of the study emphasized the significance of technology modernization and the adoption of generative AI to drive organizational performance and enhance customer experience.

Technology Modernization: A Top Priority for Singapore CEOs

According to the study, 58% of Singaporean CEOs prioritize technology modernization to keep pace with the changing business environment. By leveraging advanced technologies, these CEOs aim to enhance their organizations’ productivity and deliver exceptional customer experiences. Interestingly, customer experience ranked as the second-highest priority (51%), highlighting its crucial role in achieving their business goals. This local trend aligns with the global perspective, where CEOs around the world prioritize productivity, placing it ahead of technology modernization and customer experience.

The Strategic Decision-Makers: Operational, Technology, and Data Leaders

Singaporean CEOs are increasingly recognizing the strategic importance of operational, technology, and data leaders within their organizations. The study reveals that COOs and CFOs are identified by 58% and 57% of Singapore CEOs, respectively, as the C-suite members making crucial decisions over the next three years. Additionally, 38% of CEOs in Singapore highlight the influence of CIOs, followed by Chief Technology Officers or Chief Digital Officers, who play pivotal roles in shaping organizational decisions.

Generative AI: Balancing Advantages, Risks, and Readiness

The study underlines that CEOs acknowledge the potential competitive advantage offered by generative AI. A significant 75% of CEOs believe that the organization with the most advanced generative AI will hold a competitive edge. While half of the CEOs surveyed report integrating generative AI into their products and services, there remains a disconnect between CEOs and their executive teams regarding in-house expertise. Only 29% of executive teams feel prepared to adopt generative AI, emphasizing the need for upskilling and expertise development within organizations.

Embracing Responsible AI Adoption

Singaporean CEOs understand the importance of responsible AI adoption. Colin Tan, General Manager and Technology Leader of IBM Singapore, emphasizes the need for explainable, fair, robust, and transparent AI systems that prioritize consumer data privacy and security. As AI continues to fuel transformation and growth opportunities, CEOs must ensure that ethical considerations and bias mitigation are at the forefront of their AI strategies.

The Workforce Impact of Generative AI

Generative AI has already begun reshaping workforces. The study reveals that 43% of surveyed U.S. CEOs have either reduced or redeployed their workforce due to generative AI, with an additional 28% planning to do so in the next 12 months. However, 46% of U.S. CEOs have hired additional workers as a result of generative AI, and 26% have plans for further hiring. Despite these changes, only 28% of U.S. CEOs have assessed the potential impact of generative AI on their workforces, highlighting the need for comprehensive assessments and proactive workforce planning.

The IBM Institute for Business Value’s study highlights the significance of technology modernization and generative AI adoption for CEOs in Singapore. By prioritizing technology modernization, enhancing customer experiences, and embracing generative AI responsibly, CEOs can drive organizational performance, foster growth, and gain a competitive advantage. Additionally, strategic decision-making involving operational, technology, and data leaders plays a crucial role in navigating the evolving landscape of AI-driven transformations. As businesses continue to adapt to the age of AI, it is essential for CEOs to leverage technology advancements while addressing the associated risks and ensuring the well-being of their workforces.