Digital Capability in Higher Education. 2022 Global Insights.

334 Higher Education Industry Leaders from 41 countries shared their latest reflections about digital capability in higher education. Our annual survey updates the global picture of performance, gaps and priorities.

Education Intelligence Unit

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February 4, 2022

Insights from our annual survey on digital capability in higher education indicate that people & process continue to be significant capability gaps. The impact of COVID is being felt in diverse ways but digital transformation remains a critical priority for higher education institutions globally.

Digital Capability Insights.

One year on from HolonIQ’s last global Higher Education survey, we look at the changes made since last year and some of the persistent challenges for Higher Education leaders in their digital transformation journey.

Join us to hear more about how HE institutions around the world are building digital into their core capabilities and which dimensions in the HEDC Framework are considered highest priority for digital.

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2022 Higher Ed Digital Capability Survey Cover
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Evaluating COVID Impact.

Whilst some institutions have thrived over the last two years, for others the disruption has resulted in significant setbacks; one third of university respondents say that their institution is in a worse position than before.

This year’s results see technology-related organisations experiencing significantly increased demand as universities implement digital solutions, so it’s not surprising to see that two thirds of non-university stakeholders report being in a better position as a result of COVID.

2022 Higher Ed Digital Capability Survey COVID

Gaps, Performance & Priority.

In a continuation of last year’s trends, process and people have been identified as the greatest gap by higher education institutions around the world. Capabilities in Demand and Discovery (DD) are ranked strongest by universities, with Learner Experience (LX) most in need of improvement. Institutions are focusing their efforts in Learning Design (LD) and Learner Experience (LX).

2022 Higher Ed Digital Capability Gaps, Performance and Priorities

Outsourcing and Partnership Strategy.

Similar to 2020, around one third of university respondents in the 2021 survey indicated that their institution takes a ‘strategic partnership approach’ to outsourcing digital capability. Larger universities have shifted toward a preference for outsourcing compared with the 2020 survey. This aligns with a significant increase in university partnerships during 2021, with nearly 600 new University Partnerships established around the world.

2022 Higher Ed Digital Capability Outsourcing

Digital Capability Gaps.

For large universities, the greatest digital capability gap is attributed to ‘technology’, and systems that are “not fit for purpose anymore”. For small to medium universities, ‘process’ is the area of greatest need, followed by ‘people’. Legacy attitudes and culture change were noted as significant barriers.

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2022 Higher Ed Digital Capability Gaps 2
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HEDC Framework.

Demand and Discovery (DD), Learning Design (LD), Learner Experience (LX) and Work & Lifelong Learning (WL) are dimensions drawn from The Higher Education Digital Capability (HEDC) Framework. The Framework is a learner-focused, practical and flexible approach to mapping and measuring digital capability in higher education institutions.

Explore the HEDC Framework

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