High-Tech Hardware Spending Returns, No Help for IT Jobs

IT decision makers will be investing in hardware in the coming six months, but high-tech executives say staffing levels will remain flat.

IT decision makers will be investing in hardware in the coming six months, according to recent research, but high-tech executives say staffing will remain flat as companies not only slow the pace of jobs cuts but also hold off on new hires.

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The latest release of the CDW IT monitor reveals that more than two-thirds of some 1,043 IT decision makers in corporate and government sectors plan to make IT hardware purchases in the next six months. More than 80% of large businesses and 84% of federal government high-tech executives polled expect to invest in hardware, with a majority pointing to operational efficiency gains as motivation.

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“Hardware refresh cycles have been pushed to limits we’ve rarely seen, and anticipated investment in this area is encouraging as companies prepare for a larger economic recovery,” said Mark Gambill, CDW vice president, in a statement.

The survey, conducted over two weeks in September, also showed that more than 50% of federal government IT workers anticipate increased budgets in the next six months. Nearly 50% of both corporate and federal IT decision makers expect budgets to stay the same, with just more than 30% expecting slight budget increases. Twenty-seven percent of those polled expect to also invest in software across a significant part of their organization, while 45% anticipate software purchases for a smaller portion of their companies.

While spending is set to increase in various sectors in big and small ways, depending on the organization, questions regarding IT staff seemed to garner the same response across the board. Eighty percent of IT decision makers do not anticipate adding staff and plan to keep their personnel counts at current levels. Twelve percent do plan to hire additional IT workers in the next six months, and 8% continue to consider cutting staff, the research found.

“The confidence we began to see emerge in April with decreases in planned job cuts has now evolved into planned capital investments in IT infrastructure to increase efficiency and productivity,” Gambill stated. “The down side is that the percentage of organizations planning investments in IT staffing has held steady and in some cases declined.”

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This story, "High-Tech Hardware Spending Returns, No Help for IT Jobs" was originally published by Network World.

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