Signs of IT spending recovery emerge in surveys

Research reveals IT decision makers plan to grow budgets, high-tech investments in coming months

Survey results released separately by CDW and ISACA show a notable percentage of IT buyers intend to increase budgets and invest in IT in the next six months

IT buyers say they plan to increase their investments in technology before the end of 2009, recent survey results show, as a noteworthy number of high-tech decision makers revealed they expect in the next six months to put more budget dollars into IT.

More than 25% of 500 IT professionals polled by the nonprofit organization ISACA said they will be increasing their investments in IT this year. Nearly 30% of small businesses polled by CDW in March also expect budget increases before the end of 2009. And CDW found 18% of midsize companies expect to hire more staff over that same time. CDW polls approximately 1,000 or more IT decision makers periodically, and the research and analysis firm noted the plans to increase spending – albeit still the minority position – indicate a positive shift in thinking among IT buyers.

"For the first time in more than a year, we are seeing green shoots that indicate returning confidence in the IT industry," said Mark Gambill, CDW vice president, in a statement. "The fact that an increasing number of IT decision makers are anticipating any amount of future growth at this time is reason to believe the first signs of spring may have arrived in what has been a gloomy economic climate."

Other positive signs, according to ISACA, include the fact that more IT professionals realize the value IT delivers to the business and how continued investment in technology could help companies fare better during and following an economic recession. More than 69% of those surveyed by ISACA said that their organizations are achieving at least 50% to 100% of the expected value from their IT investments.

"Organizations should be careful not to ignore the value-generating opportunities of IT in favor of cost-cutting," said Robert Stroud, international vice president of ISACA, in a statement. "IT has the power to add competitive advantage and significant business value, so it is critical to focus on those opportunities – particularly in troubled economic times."

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