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While ERP software is attracting more IT investment than any other technology in the enterprise today, the technology that is rising the fastest in the enterprise is mobile applications, according to the Computer Economics Technology Trends 2011/2012 study.
In the study, we assess the maturity level of 16 technologies, providing a glimpse into how quickly emerging technologies are being adopted and how deeply more-established technologies and strategies are penetrating the market. This study is based on a survey of 253 organizations worldwide with annual revenue of at least $50 million, conducted during the second quarter of 2011.
Our technology maturity analysis, as illustrated in Figure 1, compares the technologies along two parameters: the current investment rate and the current adoption rate. This provides an assessment of how widely each technology is deployed, along with an assessment of how many organizations are currently investing in the technology.
The horizontal axis labeled “Percentage with Technology in Place” represents the current adoption rate. The higher the adoption rate, the farther the technology moves to the right in the chart. The vertical axis is labeled “Percentage Currently Investing,” representing the current investment rate. The greater the percentage of organizations currently investing in a technology, the higher it rises on the chart.
Note that the scale on each axis is defined by the lowest and highest values in the study. As such, in this analysis, the words “low” and “high” are relative to the technologies in this study. We report actual investment and adoption rates for each technology in the full study.
As is evident from examining Figure 1, the technologies fall roughly along the diagonal line from the low-investment, low-adoption sector to the high-investment, high-adoption sector. We deem initiatives closest to the upper right-hand corner as more “mature” than technology initiatives farther away. We rank the initiatives from 1 to 16 based on their relative maturity, with 1 being the initiative that is closest to the upper-right corner.
The chart is divided into nine sectors, representing low, moderate, and high current investment rates and low, moderate, and high current adoption rates. Each of the initiatives falls into one of the nine sectors as follows:
Enterprises today are investing in their bread-and-butter ERP systems at a high rate. That is not surprising as ERP has become the platform for integrating many of the other technologies covered in this study, such as business intelligence, CRM, and mobile applications. Cloud computing initiatives such as SaaS and mobile applications are also gaining traction. While applications are moving to the cloud, however, the use of cloud computing for infrastructure and system development platforms remains a still-emerging trend.
The full study examines adoption trends and economic characteristics of each of the 16 selected technologies and technology initiatives. The profiles on each initiative provide information on how widely the initiative is adopted, how many organizations are currently investing in it, and prospects for future adoption. In addition, we provide analysis of the economic experiences of organizations that adopt these technologies. We describe economic experience using two measures: return on investment (ROI) experience and total cost of ownership (TCO) experience.