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As the cloud continues to gain momentum, companies worldwide are increasing their spending towards the IT sector. Traditional IT systems are declining as modern digital technologies like AI and virtual reality are proving to be strong business driving forces. Indeed, the IT sector is being dominated by emerging cloud infrastructure, AI, VR, blockchain, and other modern technologies.

A Forbes Magazine report recently revealed, “By 2018, more than 60% of enterprises will have at least half of their infrastructure on cloud-based platforms.”

IT Spending Predictions

According to Forbes:

“CIOs are prioritizing big data analytics, cloud computing, and IT security in their 2016-17 budget cycles. 82% of CIOs cite security as the top driver for IT spending this year, followed by cloud computing (62%) and big data analytics (60%).”

It’s therefore little wonder the world’s leading IT research and advisory company, Gartner, found that worldwide IT spending is projected to touch $3.5 trillion in 2017, a 2.7 percent increase from 2016.

John-David Lovelock, research vice president at Gartner, provides some additional perspective on this forecast:

“2017 was poised to be a rebound year in IT spending. Some major trends have converged, including cloud, blockchain, digital business and artificial intelligence. Normally, this would have pushed IT spending much higher than 2.7% growth. However, some of the political uncertainty in global markets has fostered a wait-and-see approach causing many enterprises to forestall IT investments.”

The way an IT budget is planned determines the company’s ROI from IT and also helps them stay ahead of the curve in this bleeding-edge technological era.

Hybrid Cloud Environments and IT Spending

Leveraging the hybrid cloud, an integrated computing environment which blends elements of the public and private cloud to perform various functions in an enterprise, helps a firm achieve several organizational goals like making real-time business decisions, improving customer experience, and enabling digital business transformation.

Even though the costs of deploying the hybrid cloud may be higher compared to traditional IT systems, it makes backup and disaster recovery less expensive, reduces the downtime cost, and also saves time.

Gartner expects that by the year 2020, hybrid will become the most common usage of the cloud.

Some of the most common issues faced within an unmanaged hybrid cloud environment are cloud over-utilization, increased security risk and regulations, and excess up-time. Proper maintenance of the cloud platform along with continued cloud monitoring is essential in optimizing the cloud; by this, a company can overcome the shortcomings of an unmanaged hybrid cloud. Timely upkeep of the cloud will reduce overall maintenance costs and chances of downtime, which will be a gain for businesses.

IoT and IT Budgets

According to a report by a leading global network provider Vodafone, companies are investing 24% of their average IT budget on Internet of Things (IoT), which is on par with cloud computing or data analytics. The report further reveals that 89% of firms investing in IoT have increased their IT spending since 2015.

This is the age of Internet of Things (IoT), where everything is connected digitally. It’s aimed at making our lives simpler and faster. As such, this technology has immense potential and it will not only boost a company’s productivity but also drive innovation.

While IoT is empowering firms to do many things, it is also becoming an appealing target for hackers. The sensitive information of an enterprise definitely needs to be under high security. Therefore, it is extremely important to address the security of IoT at the right time. In order to do that, every company needs full visibility to their IT systems and spending. Currently, this is far from reality, for companies are wasting over $28 billion in software alone.

A Gartner report predicts that by the year 2020, the IoT security market is expected to touch $840.5M. Moreover, it predicts that over 25% of identified attacks in companies will involve IoT, even though IoT will account for less than 10% of IT security budgets.

Before it spins out of control, organizations must take the right preventive measures and incorporate various security solutions within their work systems.

How to Optimize IT Spending

Needless to say, maintenance and security of technology deployed within a firm plays a vital role in the efficiency and optimization of IT costs of the enterprise. The needs of the system, like updates, must be met within the given time frame in order to avoid performance issues that could lead to consequences as severe as losing crucial data or losing business. By regularly addressing the system’s needs, a company will not just save themselves from downtime. It’ll also optimize their IT spending.

Covering your system from malware attacks, improving your data centre operations, and systematically maintaining the software applications will lead to more up-time, thereby delivering greater end-results.

“Comparing your IT spends with your peers can also help you organize and optimize your IT budget”, says Gartner.

By consolidating, modernizing, integrating, and standardizing technologies, a firm can optimize its IT spending. Consolidating various technologies deployed in an organization will eliminate duplication and also save time. Concurrently, implementing modern technologies will lead to a spike in the overall productivity of the firm. Finally, allocating IT spending towards IT security and maintenance will reduce the operational costs of an organization as maintenance will ensure that the systems are running at the optimal level throughout.

IT spending, therefore, must be planned wisely with the help of experts. One of the best ways of optimizing IT spending is to be aware of the areas that need focus and to align the IT budget with the organizations’ strategic plan. Tracking IT spending will also help an enterprise reap the rewards of its spending.

 

Lucjan ZaborowskiAbout the Author: Lucjan Zaborowski is the Head of Digital for 1E. Lucjan is also an experienced marketer and project manager with a solid understanding of digital acquisition and optimization, product marketing and program management. He has over six years of experience in multi-channel digital acquisition. He is keen to learn and stay up to date with the latest marketing trends.

Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in this guest author article are solely those of the contributor, and do not necessarily reflect those of Tripwire, Inc.