For many IT organizations, enterprise resource planning (ERP) systems are at the center of the application portfolio. In this report, we analyze ERP support requirements in several ways. First, we look at the ERP support staffing ratio, which is the number of ERP users divided by the number of ERP support personnel. We then assess this ratio by the size of the ERP installation. We also examine the data to determine the ratios by vendor: SAP, Oracle E-Business Suite, Oracle JD Edwards, Microsoft, Infor, and “all other” ERP systems. We examine the ratio by sector, age of installation, years since last upgrade, extent of modification, and type of deployment (on-premises, cloud, or hosted) as well. Finally, we provide recommendations on optimizing ERP staffing levels. (19 pp., 10 fig.) [Research Byte]
In enterprise technology, digital transformation is a hot topic. But what does it really mean? This Research Byte provides a simple definition of digital transformation, breaks down the main types of digital transformation, and recommends an approach for developing a digital transformation strategy.
Network operations is a mature but evolving outsourcing category with a wide assortment of top IT and telecom industry service providers competing with regional providers for market share. This study examines adoption trends in the outsourcing of network operations. We report on the percentage of organizations outsourcing network operations (frequency), the average amount of work outsourced (level), and the change in the amount of work being outsourced (net growth trend and volatility). We also present the cost- and service-success ratings, which provide insight into the potential risks and rewards IT organizations take in turning to outside service providers. (17 pp., 8 fig.) [Research Byte]
Market intelligence on current discounting practices for business equipment can be difficult to obtain. As a result, buyers do not know whether a better deal can be negotiated. This updated report, based on our knowledge of recent deals, provides buyers with guidance concerning current discount structures on a variety of equipment. Categories include IT equipment (desktops, laptops, network equipment, printers, servers, and storage), office equipment (copiers, mail equipment), forklifts, medical equipment, test equipment, and miscellaneous equipment. Major vendors include IBM, HP, Dell, HP, Apple, and others. Includes a downloadable PDF workbook of more than 300 deals used in the report to calculate average discounts and soft cost statistics (13 pp., 17 figs.).
Database administration outsourcing often leads to satisfied customers who save money. But compared with other outsourcing categories in our study, the use of database administration service providers is not a widely practiced strategy. To help IT executives understand their options, this study examines adoption trends in database administration outsourcing. We report on the percentage of organizations outsourcing database administration (frequency), the average amount of work outsourced (level), and the change in the amount of work being outsourced (trend). We also present success rates for customer cost and service experience and show how these trends differ by organization size and sector. We conclude with recommendations for improving the effectiveness of database administration outsourcing. (17 pp., 8 fig.) [Research Byte]
Robotic process automation is the use of software “robots” to automate processes that are normally performed by clerical or administrative users, typically using multiple business applications. Nearly one quarter (24%) of large organizations are already dabbling in some form of robotic process automation (RPA), and investment in RPA shows that growth should continue. This report provides an overview of RPA adoption and investment trends, providing data on how many organizations have solutions in place, how many are in the process of implementing it, and how many are expanding implementations. We also look at the return on investment experience, total cost of ownership experience, and considered or planned uses for new RPA investments. We conclude with important principles to apply in planning and implementing RPA solutions. (19 pp., 10 fig.) [Research Byte]
Although large IT organizations are continuing to embrace the Information Technology Infrastructure Library (ITIL), the number of organizations committed to full ITIL implementation remains relatively small. This report begins with a brief explanation of ITIL’s history and current framework for IT service management, including its relationship with new approaches to change management, such as DevOps. We next study ITIL adoption and practice levels in North America, examining levels of adoption by organization size and sector. We conclude with best-practice suggestions for successful ITIL implementations. (16 pp., 6 fig.) [Research Byte]
IT security is a critical area for IT managers, who face increasingly varied threats. The response to these threats has been to bring in some help: 45% of IT organizations are increasing the amount of IT security work that they turn over to service providers. In light of the new realities, this report is designed to help IT executives compare their outsourcing activity and experience with other IT organizations. We use three metrics to measure IT security outsourcing activity: how many organizations outsource IT security (frequency), how much of the workload is typically outsourced (level), and the change in the amount of work outsourced (trend). We also measure the cost and service experience of organizations that outsource this function, and determine how outsourcing activity and experience vary by organization size and sector. We conclude with ways to capitalize on the evolving trends in IT security outsourcing. (17 pp., 8 fig.) [Research Byte]
As an organization’s application portfolio grows, the application maintenance role becomes a more critical function and IT organizations can benefit from periodic assessment of their staffing levels. This report uses three metrics to make that assessment: application maintenance staff as a percentage of the IT staff, users per application maintenance staff member, and applications per application maintenance staff member. We provide benchmarks for the composite sample, by organization size, and by sector. We also provide a benchmark for the larger Application Group, which includes personnel engaged in application development, web/e-commerce support, quality assurance and testing, data management, and business systems analysis. We conclude with practical recommendations for optimizing the productivity of application maintenance personnel. (17 pp., 9 fig.) [Research Byte]
While the dream of a fully mobile enterprise is not yet here, the quest continues with increasing investment in mobile applications. This report provides an overview of mobile application adoption and investment trends, providing data on how many organizations have the technology in place, how many are in the process of implementing it, and how many are expanding implementations. We look at the return on investment experience, total cost of ownership experience, considered or planned uses for new mobile app investment, as well as the platforms on which companies are developing mobile applications. We also assess which sectors are adopting mobile applications, and whether those organizations are developing mobile applications in-house, outsourcing the task, or relying on commercial software vendors. We conclude with recommendations to make the most of a mobile application investment. (20 pp., 10 fig.) [Research Byte]
New system projects often fail, not because of problems with the technology but because the new systems are not fully embraced by the workforce. Fortunately, there are formal methodologies that business and IT leaders can apply to establish and carry out an organizational change management program. In this report, we look at adoption trends and maturity of organizational change management by organization size and sector. We conclude with practical recommendations for companies to start or improve their change management practices. (16 pp., 6 fig.) [Research Byte]
Artificial intelligence (AI) is not a single technology but several closely grouped technologies that allow for a machine to absorb and analyze data in order to make a recommendation or take an action. AI is not yet a mature technology, but it is growing. Although only 13% of companies that completed our Technology Trends 2019 survey have adopted any type of AI solution, 24% indicate that they are investing in new AI capabilities. This report provides an overview of AI adoption and investment trends, providing data on how many organizations have solutions in place, how many are in the process of implementing it, and how many are expanding implementations. We also look at the return on investment experience, total cost of ownership experience, and which type of solutions are the most popular. We conclude with steps to consider when planning for an AI implementation. (21 pp., 11 fig.) [Research Byte]
The terms “fair market value” and “residual value” have different meanings, and it is important to know the difference when buying or leasing PCs, laptops, and other equipment. In addition, those who hold the leases (lessees) and leasing companies (lessors) use different methodologies to create their own definitions. This article outlines the perspectives of lessees and lessors, and how the former benefits from negotiating lease contracts in a considered way.
This major study provides insight into the customer experience and adoption rates for 15 technologies that are top-of-mind for IT leaders. The study also delves into satisfaction of the customer experience and the specific types of solutions under consideration. With this information business leaders are in a better position to assess the potential risks and rewards of each of these technologies. They also can gain insight into just how aggressively competitors and peers are making these investments. Forward looking, we also explore 18 future and early adopter technologies along with level of awareness and adoption (141 pp., 113 figs.) [Full Description and Sample Pages] [Research Byte]
IT leaders all over the world have a positive outlook for the global economy, but despite that confidence, IT budgets are growing only modestly. Our Worldwide IT Spending and Staffing Outlook for 2019 provides data on the global and U.S./Canadian trends for IT spending and staffing in the coming year. This year, our report assesses IT operational and capital spending plans for 2019, organizational priorities for IT spending and investment, and plans for hiring, outsourcing, and pay raises for IT organizations worldwide and in the U.S. and Canada. (35 pp., 24 figs.) [Research Byte]
The Computer Economics IT Salary Report 2019 provides total compensation for 75 IT job functions for more than 400 U.S. metro areas and 20 industry sectors. The executive summary also provides our forecast for pay raises and hiring in 2019 and includes job descriptions for each job function. The salary tables are provided as a downloadable Microsoft Excel workbook, with total salaries reported at the 10th, 25th, 50th (median), 75th, and 90th percentiles. (35 pp., 8 figs., plus salary tables) [Research Byte] [Full Description and Free Executive Summary]
The best-run IT organizations not only focus their process improvement efforts on those of other departments, they also seek to optimize their own IT management processes internally. In this study, we examine the growth and maturity of 35 IT management practices which we have grouped into six major categories: IT governance practices, IT financial management practices, IT operational management practices, IT security and risk management practices, application development practices, and innovation best practices. (207 pp., 184 figs.) [Full Report Description and Sample Pages] [Research Byte]
This major study profiles outsourcing activity for 10 IT functions: application development, application maintenance, data center operations, database administration, desktop support, disaster recovery services, help desk services, IT security, network operations, and web/e-commerce systems. For each IT function, we measure the frequency and level of outsourcing. We also look at the current plans of IT organizations to increase or decrease the amount of work they outsource. We examine the customer experience to assess whether organizations are successfully lowering costs or improving service through outsourcing. Finally, we show the outsourcing frequency by sector for each function. (105 pp., 89 fig.) Full Report Description [Research Byte]
Our 2018/2019 IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarks study provides a comprehensive view of the current state of IT budgeting and staffing levels for business and governmental organizations in the U.S. and Canada, based on our 29th annual survey. Detailed metrics are provided by organization size and by industry sector. This article allows purchase of all 30 chapters at a significant discount off the individual chapter price. Individual chapters are also available for purchase – click the Full Study Description below for details. (1,749 pp., 1,052 figs.) [Full Study Description and Individual Chapter Pricing]
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