The Channel Company Partners With IDC To Develop Midmarket Research, Content

A joint research project already under way will provide insight into the trends impacting CIOs and IT executives at midsize companies and the challenges they face.


The Channel Company has established a research and content partnership with market intelligence firm IDC that will bring more midmarket IT research to The Channel Company's Midsize Enterprise Summit conferences and webinars.

As part of the collaboration, The Channel Company and IDC will deliver new midmarket research, identifying the key trends impacting CIOs and senior IT executives in midsize enterprises, as well as the technology vendors and solution providers who serve them.

The results of the first collaborative research project, defining the "State of the Midmarket," will be presented by IDC analysts at the Midsize Enterprise Summit: Fall 2019, scheduled for Sept. 15-17 in Phoenix.

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"Our partnership with IDC comes at a time when powerful forces are reshaping the IT midmarket. This game-changing period in the industry demanded we take the Midsize Enterprise Summit event and webinar series in a new direction to reinforce our position as a conduit for change and building strategic relationships that maximize ROI," said Bob Skelley, CEO of The Channel Company, parent of CRN. "IDC’s global leadership in the IT market intelligence and advisory services space made them the ideal partner."

The information and insight generated by the research will help today’s IT leaders decipher the massive changes sweeping through one of the U.S. economy’s strongest sectors.

“IT strategies in the digital era are undergoing a necessary transformation, becoming an integral part of the enterprise digital strategy. No longer an insular exercise by the CIO, IT strategies must be co-created and co-owned by senior IT executives, line-of-business leaders and senior management. CIOs need an inclusive, agile and systematic approach to IT strategy development to meet the ever-changing needs of the business," said Joseph Pucciarelli, IDC group vice president and IT executive adviser.

The goal of the research, a highly structured statistical survey of midmarket IT executives, is to "get a good understanding of the challenges faced by midmarket IT executives and to quantify those challenges," Pucciarelli said in an interview at the Midsize Enterprise Summit: Spring 2019 this week in Orlando, Fla.

The survey results, and feedback on the findings when they are presented at the MES: Fall 2019 conference, will be used to shape the agenda for future research, Pucciarelli said.

Pucciarelli expects the survey to reveal insight into the challenges IT executives in midsize companies face as more IT buying decisions are made by line-of-business managers. "This is very much the case with midmarket CIOs," he said.

The IDC analyst expects the research will be of interest to VARs, solution providers and strategic service providers, as dispersed buying authority within midsize companies means the channel has to adopt more complex sales, service renewal and support strategies to serve multiple constituencies.

The survey may also shed light on the kind of new services that IT managers at midsize companies are demanding— information that should help guide solution providers’ sales and go-to-market strategies, Pucciarelli said.

The MES event series (Fall, Spring and IT Security), connects midmarket senior IT executives with technology suppliers and thought leaders to build strategic relationships that maximize ROI.

In addition to collaborating on research and content for the MES conferences and webinars, IDC analysts will deliver keynote presentations at the MES events highlighting findings and actionable business intelligence from the joint research conducted by the companies, as well as moderating discussions/workshops, and holding one-on-one meetings with senior IT executives and technology suppliers.

"The relationship will play an integral role as we expand MES to concentrate on forward-thinking business, data management and technology strategies that are in alignment with the new role of the senior midmarket IT executive who must enable line-of-business and senior company leaders to optimize IT," Skelley said.

"The midmarket IT leader's role has gradually evolved from being mostly focused on the maintenance of existing operations and the evaluation of new technologies against those operations to having to become more business-savvy and analytical when proposing a new set of requirements or changes to the organization," said Vennard Wright, CIO of the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission, and MES Advisory Board Member, in a statement.

"To that end," he said, "it is imperative that The Channel Company partner with a research firm such as IDC that can provide valuable insight into the nuances that are necessary for senior IT executives to be successful as strategic partners in business initiatives through technology.”