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IT Spending Continues for 2008

by Anne McCrory, Editorial Director, CIO Decisions Media, TechTargetMonday, March 24, 2008

When it comes to strategic spending for 2008, the latest research from TechTarget's CIO Decisions Media shows a range of projects on the radar scope for CIOs. 

Though news of a potential recession is leading some CIOs to build contingency plans, a large majority reported budgets equal to or higher than those of 2007. In addition, 23% reported budgets that were more than 5% higher than those for 2007. 

The survey drew 748 responses from subscribers to SearchCIO.com and SearchCIO-Midmarket.com, all of whom had budgetary responsibility or knowledge of spending plans. Respondents were from companies with 100 to 50,000 employees. 

Topping the list of strategic purchases for 2008 were the categories of enterprise applications (49%), disaster recovery (44%) and security (44%), followed by data center and business intelligence (36% each). Let's look at each in turn: 

Applications: Almost 90% of respondents reported plans to purchase applications this year. Of that group, 54% planned to buy industry-specific applications, 46% planned some type of email purchase and 43% a mobile application. One in three companies planned to buy a customer relationship management (CRM) application, and one in four, an enterprise resource planning (ERP) system. 

Prospective ERP buyers reported a variety of license models: 57% planned an on-premise license, 17% a hosted version and 8% a subscription (Software as a Service). Another 17% said they didn't know what model they would be choosing. 

Meanwhile, just over half have a business intelligence project planned. If that will involve a purchase (80%), then the shopping list will include query and reporting tools (74%), tools to build a data warehouse (64%), dashboards (53%), search or indexing tools (38%) and extract, transform and load (ETL) tools (36%). 

Infrastructure: Let's start our discussion by looking at what data center managers will be wheeling into their server rooms (or loading onto those boxes). While updating or replacing old systems was the top driver for infrastructure purchases (66%), efficiency and expansion weren't too far behind (both at 53%). Thus it's not surprising that technologies that achieve these goals are on purchase lists: storage (62%), servers (54%), server virtualization (50%) and blade servers (46%).  

Meanwhile, virtualization was also cited as part of their disaster recovery strategy (43%). 

Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity: Besides server virtualization, other components of a DR/BC strategy include having a co-location facility (42%), a hot site (32%), managed services (27%) or a cold site (22%), with some relying on offsite backup only (32%). 

Purchasing covers all these areas. A majority of respondents plan to buy backup and recovery software this year (62%), while some plan to contract with an outside provider (34%) and plan to expand or update a hot or cold site (32%). 

Security: Finally, for security purchases, which tie for second place with DR/BC in strategic importance, a majority of organizations plan to upgrade antivirus capabilities (60%) and deploy inside-the-firewall network security (53%). Perimeter security will be purchased by 47% of respondents, identity and access management by 48%, endpoint security by 35% and security event management by 26%. Managed services are in the offing for 22%. 

Thus, as our data shows, IT organizations will continue to drive business innovation, efficiency and risk management with their purchases this year.



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