CA’s Channel Index Reveals SMBs Switching IT Budgets from Reactive to Proactive Projects

Geek Speak

Companies are increasingly switching their IT budgets from routine maintenance toward more innovative projects that enable revenue-generating services, according to the CA Technologies

Channel Index 2013.

Of the more than 550 partners worldwide who participated in the company’s online survey, it was revealed that, on average, partners spend 34 percent of their time helping customers with innovation projects that enable new revenue-generating services. The conventional wisdom is that 80 percent of a company’s IT budget is typically spent on maintenance and operations, leaving just 20 percent for innovation initiatives.

Two priority areas for IT investment emerged from this research: enterprise mobility and cloud. Enterprise mobility is becoming increasingly more widespread, providing customers and employees with new and convenient ways of accessing enterprise applications. With this comes added complexity to the IT environment and new challenges to manage and keep the IT environment secure.

The index revealed that 84 percent of CA Technologies partners expect to see increased spending on enterprise mobility over the next year and almost all (94 percent) recognize that the rapid adoption of mobility creates opportunities to help grow their business.

Cloud computing was identified by CA Technologies partners as the second priority for their customers IT investments. Sixty nine percent of the partners surveyed predicted an increase in cloud computing spending over the next year. Cloud gives customers greater agility to match business needs, and enables innovation by leveraging this new way of using and consuming technology. It is also transforming the cost model away from fixed investments to more pay-per use models. While the private cloud is the most popular deployment model today (65 percent of partners have customers who are using it), the use of hybrid cloud is increasing quickly (with 34 percent currently using it and 26 percent planning to use it in the next 12 months).

CA Technologies partners are innovating as well as their customers, by evolving their business models to adapt to customer demand and evolving into MSPs The arrival and adoption of disruptive technologies presents great opportunities for partners and the survey indicates they are responding quickly to market changes.

The Channel Index also found that 60 percent of partners have become (or started to become) full MSPs, while 26 percent acknowledged that they need to consider the MSP business model. The MSP model enables them to build cloud-based service offerings that allow their customers to meet business needs with more flexible and cost-efficient IT. Partners are also offering innovative services, with 71 percent offering services above and beyond basic IT.