CompTIA Latest Report Forecasts Gloomy IT Economic Outlook
CompTIA is blaming a stalled economic recovery for a dip in IT spending. According to the organization’s Business Confidence Index, company investment in infrastructure and employment is at a standstill amid uneasiness about the direction the economy will take. Here’s a quick brief of the stats and figures …
The 2011 Q3 Business Confidence Index (BCI), which scales to 100, dropped two points to hit 52.9. Not awful, but CompTIA noted it’s the same point index for Q3 and Q4 of 2010. “The nation’s economy has yet to truly break out of its funk,” according to the report, and while the news won’t likely kill optimists, CompTIA’s next little nugget just may send them over the edge: There’s an 18 percent gap between IT confidence and general economy confidence, which makes Q3 2011 one of the highest gaps in more than a year.
However, CompTIA noted IT executives are still maintaining an air of optimism, despite failed Q3 predictions that pushed the BCI a mere 5.2 points. The report also noted a growing number of companies see the fatigued economy as their biggest enemy when it comes to business growth — that and lack of product demand.
The silver lining is CompTIA’s figures that show 88 percent of businesses plain to maintain or increase their tech spending, and 87 percent of IT firms will do the same as they invest in new products.
But that comes at a price: Only 34 percent of IT companies said they plan on adding more employees, and worse yet, only 38 percent said they planned to keep their existing employee levels. Coming off the massive layoff announcement from Cisco Systems, CompTIA’s survey seems to confirm there is still rough road ahead.
What does this mean for the channel? Focus on whatever industry you’re working in and hone that craft. Cloud solutions are a perfect example of how a VAR or MSP can weather the storm. If, like CompTIA’s report shows, companies are investing in more tech spending, price-conscious solutions that leverage subscriptions and the cloud could be a perfect way to maintain the bottom line. In addition, adding more value to existing customers is likely another way to deal with the “fatigue” that companies are experiencing.