IT infra consolidation; security; IT-enabled business innovation; social; big data
Industry entering most critical period of disruptive transformation, says IDC
IDC’s 2014 IT Services Survey results reveal that the top five focus areas for IT services spending in the coming 12 months are IT infrastructure resources consolidation; security enhancement; IT-enabled business innovation; social applications; and big data and analytics.
The results are in line with findings from the IDC Asia/Pacific C-Suite Barometer 2014 study: Asia Pacific (excluding Japan) chief information officers’ top priorities are saving to invest and innovate, and security the business, the research and analyst firm said in a statement.
“As we look ahead to 2015, the industry is entering the most critical period of disruptive transformation -- what IDC calls the ‘innovation stage’ of the Third Platform era,” said Cathy Huang, research manager, Services and Cloud Research Group, IDC Asia/Pacific.
“IT services (inclusive of cloud services) will be the most important catalyst and enabler, to facilitate this trend,” she added.
The opportunities are not only found in the professional services market (which IDC expects to double in the next three years), but also in the managed services and outsourcing markets.
The 2014 IDC IT Services Survey also asked respondents the primary services types they engage for each critical investment focus area.
Among the top three areas, the results showed more than 39% of respondents chose outsourcing/ managed services as the primary service types they will engage in 2015.
The business innovation theme is highest at 54%, which means more than half of the respondents chose the outsourcing/ managed services model when it comes to meeting business innovation needs.
“This finding is in line with the current transformation happening in the offshore and business process outsourcing (BPO) market,” said Huang.
“Customers who are currently outsourcing their business processes are moving away from pure cost reduction metrics to more business insights-driven metrics which can help them innovate.
“IDC believes customers will select partners who can help provide business data/ insight and consulting services to help them enhance their competitive positioning. Moreover, the BPO service delivery is moving toward a platform-based model, and customers expect a high level of automation.
“The promise of Business Process-as-a-Service (BPaaS) is to provide the next quantum of reducing costs, speed of service delivery, better financial management, and the ability to integrate more easily with other business processes,” she added.
Consolidating IT resources
On a five point scale, the majority of respondents (63.7%) chose ‘agree’ and ‘extremely agree’ for the statement “When I consolidate my IT resources in the data centre, it allows me to have better security controls and management.”
The average mean score for this statement across the APeJ region, 4.04, is the highest score among other assumptions tested in the survey. This result is in sync with the top two focus areas identified from the survey for IT services spend: IT resources consolidation and security enhancement.
“We have seen a growing number of organizations across the region leveraging their consolidated data centre as part of their security strategy,” said Huang.
“Data centres across the region are undergoing a major revamp and security is a priority for the updates,” she added.
Huang believes consolidating resources in data centres will benefit network security vendors, and other facets of security players such as mobile security and content security.
Security and the cloud
The IDC IT services survey also revealed that the primary services types for security enhancement are consulting/ systems integration and managed/ outsourcing services, in order of priority.
“Security is a critical topic for CXOs, and the traditional product-oriented sale is no longer sufficient. Customers need to ensure the maximum value and protection they can gain from the security technology investment, and as such, the engagement has become more consultative in nature,” Huang said.
Other than the top two identified services types, 37.1% of respondents chose ‘use of cloud to deliver’ as well. That, combined with the option of managed/ outsourcing services (which includes all the cloud-based managed/ outsourcing services) is in sync with one of IDC’s IT services predictions for 2015: 60% services for security will be dependent on cloud-enabled tools and service delivery.
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