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Although the 2012 survey results are very similar to those of 2011, the percentage growth of 2.2% in IT operational budgets shows a slight improvement since the flat growth in the recession years. Such a modest increase signals that organizations maintain their status quo and business leaders do not hurry to aggressively make strategic investments in innovation in order to gain competitive advantage.

IT executives still lack confidence in their spending plans and confirm the IT spending recovery to be very weak. Nearly one-third of all survey participants expected some budget cuts in 2012, compared to only 16% of those who planned to exceed their spending plans. In Europe, IT executives are quite pessimistic about their future IT spending due to the unresolved debt crisis. In general, the survey concludes that in 2012 the lack of confidence among corporate IT decision makers was higher than ever since 2009.

Another alarming finding is that almost half of all IT executives polled consider their IT budgets inadequate and unable to meet their business needs. The slim growth in IT spending hasn’t actually restored IT budgets leaving many IT organizations underfunded due to cost cutting.

Regarding IT staffing, 40% of the surveyed IT executives admitted their plans to increase IT staff headcount in 2012, which is up 7% from 2011. On the other hand, almost 30% of companies still planned to reduce their IT staff last year.

In their Technology Maturity analysis Computer Economics point to ERP systems and data warehousing / Business Intelligence (BI) as the High Investment / High Adoption areas, Mobile as a High Investment / Moderate Adoption area and desktop virtualization, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) as the Low Investment / Low Adoption areas.

Massive investments in ERP systems are not surprising, as ERP has become the platform for integrating many other technologies including BI, CRM and mobile apps. Software as a Service (SaaS) and mobile technologies are still gaining traction mainly among early adopters.

But rapid dissemination of smartphones across the Globe will undoubtedly lead to much heavier investments in these technologies which may change the entire IT spending landscape by the end of 2013, won’t it?

Source: Computer Economics, 2012

> The Executive summary of this reprot is available fro free download here.

Editors note: This is a report from an US-based analyst company. The study is based on a survey of 200 IT executives, most probably with focus US and Canada. However we found it interesting to provide some data about the US market thus consultants and providers can compare the different markets and economical conditions in IT-service sector.


Author: Viktor Bogdanov, PR Manager at Ciklum. Original article is available on Ciklum’s blog. Ciklum is Knowledge Partner of the German Outsourcing Association.