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Report: Enterprise Software Driving IT Spending Growth

IT_Spend_Forecast_Q22014IT departments will be spending more, and a majority of their budgets will go to enterprise software. Gartner recently released their Worldwide IT Spending Forecast, stating enterprise software will run away with the strongest growth of any IT sector.

According to the report, IT will spend $3.8 trillion globally in 2014. That amount is up 3.1 percent from 2013. Of that total amount spent, enterprise software will account for $321 billion. That amount is up 6.9 percent from the previous year.

The Gartner report details one of the strongest sub-groups in terms of overall IT growth projections are areas directly supporting enterprise applications. There are two main reasons driving this push in enterprise software spending growth, and by no coincidence they are two important keys to any successful enterprise mobility strategy:

Exploiting analytics to leverage efforts

Data is one of the most sought-after things an organization desires from a reporting and decision-making standpoint. And for many, it’s also the largest gap. We have companies ask us all the time how they can use data from their enterprise mobile software to leverage their bottom line.

What products are selling the most? Which type of collateral is being viewed most frequently?

Analytics are many times where the answers lie. It’s in the data. For enterprise applications, analytics play a vital role in how an app is adopted among employees, how it is being used on a regular basis, and what functions and features are or are not driving revenue.

If a company chooses to go the route of building their own in-house application, analytics can sometimes be a painstaking process to nail down on the backend. While many off-the-shelf applications have analytics packages built-in and ready for use. No matter how IT, sales or marketing gets their analytics through its enterprise application, the information it possesses can hold the key to improving many aspects of their organization.

Enhancing the customer experience

Often sales reps only have one shot at leaving a lasting and positive impression with a customer. If a rep reaches for their tablet, opens their enterprise software and the customer is turned off by the experience, they’re probably not going to agree to buy there in the meeting. The rep has missed a prime moment, and are more likely now to lose the opportunity. Whether the rep has control over the applications or piece of enterprise software the rep is using in the field, what the customer sees and experiences during an in-person sales call can make or break a potential deal.

That being said, IT recognizes the importance of enhancing the customer experience by enabling their reps with the appropriate revenue-generating pieces of enterprise software. So much so that according to Gartner, enterprise application software investment will almost double from its total of $300 billion at the end of 2013 to $575 billion by the end of 2018.

IT needs to be smart about enterprise software

Just because the forecasts show IT will spend more on enterprise software in the coming years doesn’t mean they should just throw money at any software. IT, in conjunction with sales and marketing, need to determine the right criteria for any enterprise software they plan to add. If software doesn’t mesh with the current sales process, especially with customer-facing applications, organizations will essentially have taken a two steps backwards.

Image courtesy of iStockphotoarakonyunus