Business demands IT value from spending
Research from Gartner shows that global spending on IT services will grow 4.2% in 2017 and climb to almost 5% the following year. Similarly, outlay on enterprise software will expand 6.8% this year. These figures compare favourable to overall growth in IT spending, which Gartner says will hit just 2.7% by the end of the year.
While investment in software and IT services is surging, there is a significant slowdown elsewhere. Device sales will remain flat this year according to Gartner, which notes that while sales of ultra mobiles and hybrid tablet/laptops are relatively strong, this is offset by declining shipments of tablets and traditional PCs. There’s a similar story elsewhere, with communications, devices and data centres markets suffering sluggish or flat growth.
So why are IT services and software being prioritised for corporate technology spending? Simply put, laptops, mobile, servers etc., are tools. On their own, they won’t solve the problems and challenges that businesses have. However, good software supported by effective IT services can deliver massive value.
IT in transition
Business IT is still in a transitional period. Whereas once the goal was simply to provide and support technology, the stakes are much higher now. Business technology must be reliable and secure. But it must also be flexible, progressive and directly related to corporate objectives. IT service management is what enables this duality to exist.
First, IT must understand what the business needs. Then it must establish how to deliver against these needs, without compromising the integrity of the IT estate. The IT service is then the pivot point, balancing both of these aims if handled correctly. In other words, IT service management leads to IT value.
It is a tough challenge. And this is why businesses that understand the depth of the challenge are investing in the areas that will make a difference. IT service management has been around for a long time, but now it finally appears to be gaining the recognition it deserves.