The Canadian arm of the international consulting firm Deloitte, has published a report that states that “Rapid advances in key technologies are poised to disrupt many of the industries that anchor our economy”. A study of 700 business of various sizes and sectors showed that only 13% are prepared to compete as industrial technology advances rapidly. They also state that many Canadian companies have “little to no idea that they are investing less than their [American] peers on technology and R&D.”
The article is definitely worth a read. They talk about the five technologies that are going to be driving disruptive innovation. They are: Advanced Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Networks, Advanced Manufacturing, and Collaborative Connected Platforms. What I find most interesting is that they identify a “preparedness perception gap” where 68% of the unprepared firms believe themselves to be fully prepared!
One might be tempted to think that the report is Doloitte’s way of drumming up consulting business, and there may be an aspect of this; however, it is important to put this in context with other findings. Over the past few years, there have been a number of reports, including the Jenkins Report that have described a significant Canadian Innovation Gap. Jenkins “Innovation Canada: a call to action” outlines how the federal government can assist industrial R&D, which includes (among other things) focused defence spending and utilization of college resources to assist with industry R&D.
All is not doom and gloom however, Deloitte goes on to identify a “Path to Preparedness” that includes such things as Cultivating Awareness, Building the Right Culture, Fostering Agility, and Developing Effective Resources. They also outline recommendations for Governments and Academia. You can take comfort in knowing that Camosun’s Technology Access Centre is helping companies on Vancouver Island adopt advanced manufacturing technologies, and has a strong set of resources to help companies develop and improve their products, as well as improve their processes with automation, and robotics.
Deloitte’s Report in pdf form can be accessed by clicking here.