Checking In from Spiceworld with the 2020 State of IT Report

Spiceworks reports findings from a recent survey.

As has been typical for me around this time of year (end of September, beginning of October) I spent the bulk of last week at Spiceworks' annual member shindig, SpiceWorld. The 2019 version was everything you'd want it to be: bigger, more vendors present, great technology to poke around, and a great bunch of people.


As is the Spiceworks gang's usual wont, they produced another iteration of their annual member survey report. This year's report is titled as shown in the graphic as "The 2020 State of IT." It's an interesting mix of information and worth a once-over, based on a survey of over 1,000 business technology buyers in Europe and North America conducted in July 2019.


This is a forward-looking report, which is how I guess Spiceworks gets away with labeling data collected in mid-2019 as a 2020 report. For more on the respondent demographics, see the report's "Details on the Data" page: it's very interesting.


In terms of overall structure, the report is broken into three substantive sections: Buyer Insights, Tech Spend, and Future Tech, with the obligatory conclusion.


Report Highlights


The primary callouts for the report appear on the second panel with 4 items:


? IT Budgets are on the rise: 44 percent of businesses plan to up their tech spending in 2020, up from 38 percent in 2019.
? Tech Trends: Business uptake for AI-powered technologies are projects to triple by 2021, and edge computing will double by that same year.
? Security Impetus: One in four enterprises (defined as organizations with 1,000 employees or more) will increase IT spending in 2020 because of a recent security incident.
? 5G Sooner, Not Later: Two-thirds of large enterprises (defined as orgs with 5,000 employees or more) plan to deploy 5G by 2021.


Buyer Insights


This is an interesting part of the report because it explains where the money spent on IT is going. A rough breakdown looks something like this:


? 7 percent of total IT spend is on Security (endpoint, network, database security and so forth)
? 6 percent of total IT spend on Collaboration & Communication (telephony, team collaboration, unified communications, project management, and so on)
? 22 percent on End User Hardware (desktops, laptops, printers, mobile devices, and more)
? 9 percent on Server Technology (server hardware, including hyperconverged infrastructure, UPS, and so forth)
? 4 percent on Networking (routers, firewalls, wireless networking, and so on)
? 10 percent on Storage & Backup (server backup, endpoint storage, data warehouse solutions, and more)


What about the other 32 percent? It's spread across a great many sectors too fragmented to call out specifically.


Tech Spend


What are IT decision makers spending money on?

Lots of interesting information here about IT spending and budgets, including factors contributing to increases in such budgets. The report lists the top 9 such factors as:


1) 64 percent: need to update or upgrade outdated infrastructure
2) 47 percent: increased security concerns
3) 47 percent: employee growth
4) 45 percent: increased priority for IT projects
5) 31 percent: business revenue increases
6) 29 percent: changes to regulations or compliance requirements
7) 13 percent: recent security incident
8) 10 percent: currency fluctuations
9) 9 percent: corporate tax cuts


Future Tech at Work


As already mentioned, 5G and AI-based technologies are big on everybody's radar. Other hot new technologies include blockchain, increasing switchovers to hyperconverged technologies (not new, but still burgeoning), and edge computing as well.


Surprisingly, 16 percent of large enterprises (probably with branch offices in areas offering early 5G adoption) are already using 5G, with adoption rates expected to hit 66 percent by 2021. There's also a great chart on adoption of technology trends that shows how organizations of varying sizes are picking up IT automation, Gigabit Wi-Fi, IoT, containers, and more. Definitely worth a look-see.


In short, the Spiceworks 2020 State of IT is loaded with interesting information and insights. Grab yourself a copy today, and look it over. Enjoy!


Would you like more insight into the history of hacking? Check out Calvin's other articles about historical hackery:
About the Author

Ed Tittel is a 30-plus-year computer industry veteran who's worked as a software developer, technical marketer, consultant, author, and researcher. Author of many books and articles, Ed also writes on certification topics for Tech Target, ComputerWorld and Win10.Guru. Check out his website at, where he also blogs daily on Windows 10 and 11 topics.