Projected IT spending within the professional services arena is looking rosy for the next six months, according to the CDW IT Monitor.
The segment expanded at a faster rate than any other industry surveyed, with IT decision-makers within the professional services industry reporting a 10 percentage point increase in anticipated IT budget, a 14 percentage point increase in hardware, a 17 percentage point increase in software and a 10 percentage point increase in solutions during the next six months.
According to the survey, more IT decision-makers are feeling optimistic about the prospects of their IT budgets increasing. Many are forecasting significant IT investments in the next six months, in both hardware and software.
"We believe that organizations will continue to look at technology investments as ways to boost efficiencies, increase productivity and gain new competitive advantages in 2012," said Neal Campbell, senior vice president and chief marketing officer at CDW.
The CDW report found that expectations for IT solutions spending increased two percentage points to 45 percent, a 2011 high. Anticipated spending from midsize businesses rose nine points, while large businesses and the federal government rose two points. Of those anticipating increased solutions investment, the greatest priorities in the next six months are networking (58 percent), security (57 percent), virtualization (56 percent) and cloud computing (47 percent).
The study also found that "bring your own" computing environments are increasing in popularity. Seventy six percent of IT decision-makers reported that their companies' let employees use personal mobile devices for work-related tasks. However, nearly one in five are not using IT security measures or protocols to manage them.
"Organizations that fail to address new security risks are flirting with disaster, and could face threats ranging from business continuity disruptions to data theft," Campbell said.