Business complexity acelerates at a rapid pace, according to Pega study

Tom Libretto, Chief Marketing Officer at Pega

A new global study from Pegasystems Inc., (NASDAQ: PEGA) on the state of business complexity found that nearly three out of four ANZ employees (71%) feel their job complexity continues to rise as customer demands increase. At the same time, employees at all levels report feeling overloaded with information, systems, and processes, making it difficult for them to adapt to these new challenges and meet their customers’ growing needs.

As the pandemic bore down, most businesses deployed digital transformation to help address this new reality. But the survey findings from 500 employees across ANZ suggest these initiatives either didn’t go far enough or were implemented in silos without a unified vision.

What were the findings of Pega’s study?

47% of respondents think that digital transformation may have increased job complexity, a surprising perception that should cause some firms to re-examine their digital approach.

But before they can redefine a new strategy to reduce business complexity, organisations must first understand the key drivers that are rapidly increasing business complexity. Survey respondents identified a mix of varied organisational, technological, and societal factors that are adding complexity to their work, the top of which include:

  1. Managing information overload, reported by 93% of respondents
  2. Keeping pace with rapid change (92%)
  3. Navigating internal processes and bureaucracy, managing projects, and people (89%)
  4. Collaborating across teams (86%)

How can businesses handle the employee complexities?

How can businesses better address these complexity drivers? According to survey, they should start by breaking down technological silos. The presence of different systems was the top tech issue driving complexity in their organisation, selected by 50% of respondents.

When asked what businesses can do to make their tech experience less complex, their top remedy was to deploy systems that easily integrate with other tech and make them easier to use (selected by 41%). This suggests that businesses need to take a unified approach to digital transformation as opposed to piecemeal projects implemented in isolation.

What did the pandemic fuel business complexity?

According to the survey, many employees also highlighted how the pandemic specifically contributed to the acceleration of business complexity in a number of ways:

  • Most employees (64%) feel the pandemic makes business more complex in the long run.
  • One in three employees (35%) think hybrid work arrangements make business more complex. When asked why, 42% said meetings had become frequent but less productive.
  • 35% think the pandemic makes it difficult to find the right people to hire, while 67% say their company cannot attract talent with the necessary tech skills to do the jobs properly.

With the pandemic triggering rapid change, many employees want their organisation to adapt even faster: two-in-five reported their organisation moves too slowly to react to change. But despite its own complexity, technology still remains the key to streamlining their job functions, as 99% agree that technology is vital to getting their jobs done right.

What are Pega’s thoughts on the study?

“With business complexity on the rise, organisational leaders need to rethink their digital transformation strategies,” said Tom Libretto, chief marketing officer, Pega.

“Too many businesses applied quicks fixes in the early days of the pandemic that were siloed in nature and simply didn’t go far enough. Now it’s time to take a step back and implement a smarter, holistic, and unified approach – one that simplifies and streamlines workflows so employees can thrive and customers succeed,” Pega’s CMO, Tom further commented.

“Our new survey helps businesses understand why they continue to suffer with complexity so they have the insights to reset their digital transformation agenda and better cope with change no matter where it comes from next,” Pega’s CMO, Tom Libretto concluded.

The survey was conducted by research firm Savanta during January and February 2022 to understand the evolving nature of business complexity. For more, download the full report Demystifying Complexity in the Modern Workforce at