New report on digital maturity in UK infrastructure sector

A new report by the Digital Transformation Task Group has been published, providing a data-driven snapshot of digital maturity from the UK's Infrastructure Client Group. Titled Common challenges, shared response, the report prepared by Mott MacDonald and sponsored by the Infrastructure Client Group and Institution of Civil Engineers, identifies best practice from the ICG and highlights areas where collective action is needed to remove blockers and accelerate progress across the energy, transport and water sector.   

Powered by Mott MacDonald’s Smart Infrastructure (SI) Index, the report focuses on seven areas of digital maturity: customers; commercial; digital transformation; asset management; asset delivery; asset performance; and continuous improvement. With responses from over 150 individuals from leading UK infrastructure owners and operators, the results point to three key themes for 2019: 

A workforce fit for the future - The digital skills gap is poorly understood according to over 50% of responses. Companies need to develop new career paths and define a digital competency framework for their future workforce. 

Laying the foundations for digital twins - The Gemini Principles underline the importance of defining a clear purpose for any digital twin. Owners need to identify tangible opportunities to create value today through pilot projects, while building the foundational layers for future applications. 95% said poorly organised information currently prevents them from realising its full value.  

Innovation in an assured environment - How can companies enable innovation in a way that does not introduce unacceptable levels of risk? Although 80% said their organisation responds effectively to changes in legislation, owners should challenge established processes where more agile ways of working could drive innovation without compromising service to customers. Boosting diversity within the industry is also key. 

The Smart Infrastructure Index Mott MacDonald’s SI Index is an online digital maturity assessment tool which takes just 15 minutes to complete and provides a bespoke report benchmarking scores against industry best practice. It highlights areas of focus and clear next steps to help businesses progress on their journey to digital transformation.  

The insights generated by the SI Index relate to understanding skills requirements, helping the workforce to acquire and continuously develop those skills, and converting knowledge held in individuals or small groups into information that can be shared by all in support of better decisions. It was found that 70% respondents don’t understand their digital skills gap and only 47% could analyse the impact of organisational changes on overall performance.  

Jamie Radford, digital transformation lead, Mott MacDonald said: “Digital transformation will be a major contributor to achieving the step change in efficiency our industry needs to meet increasing pressures ranging from rising populations, the desire for social development and the urgent need to drive down carbon emissions. By reviewing a diverse cross-section of participants, we gained a rich picture of how digital culture varies across the infrastructure industry.” 

Click here to download the Common challenges, shared response report.

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