Modest Growth Projected for IT Spending in 2015

IT budgetWill IT spending increase in the New Year?

Yes, but "how much" depends on who you ask. Different industry surveys show somewhat different outlooks for IT budgets in 2015. What’s clear is that some technologies (hint: security) will attract much more investment than others.

ComputerWorld’s annual  survey of IT executives projects a rosy view. Some 43% of the 194 respondents said that they expect their IT budgets to increase. That’s up from 36% in 2014. The expected changes in IT budgets reported by all respondents averaged out to a 4.3% increase.

Security is the top need identified in the ComputerWorld survey, followed by cloud computing and business analytics. In the wake of high-profile security breaches in the retail and healthcare industries, nearly half (46%) of respondents said that they will invest more next year in access control, intrusion prevention, identity management, and virus and malware protection.

The advisory group, Computer Economics, predicts modest 3% growth in the US and Canada for IT spending, up from 2.7% in 2014. Investments in mobility, cloud, security and business intelligence are all high priorities in IT budgets in the coming year, according to the report.

The outlook is less promising for IT capital budgets and infrastructure. The survey of 128 IT organizations globally found that spending in those areas will be flat to weak.

Yet another IT survey, this one from TEKSystems, finds 45% of IT leaders expect their budgets to increase next year. While that seems bullish, the figure is down from 62% in their 2014 forecast.

Some 36% of IT leaders in the survey said they expect to increase contingent IT staff in 2015, down from 46% in 2014.

On the plus side for workers, these industry surveys project modest salary increases for IT talent. The Computer Economics report shows more than half of IT organizations plan to add staff, and an a growing number indicated they were transitioning from the use of contractors to the hiring of more full-time employees.