As a technology selection management software (TSM) provider we wanted to find out how much the current volatile economic conditions would affect IT purchasing roadmaps for our customers and other software and IT sourcing professionals. So, we conducted a software buyer survey asking key IT decision makers about purchasing plans for 2016, and about the obstacles they faced in their IT selection and purchasing processes.
Here’s a brief excerpt of the SelectHub Software Buyer Survey Report 2016. Download the full report.
Hottest Software Categories
To identify the most relevant software categories for 2016, especially Q1, the audience was asked “what is your next planned enterprise software purchase this quarter?” The responses highlighted 3 major software categories: business intelligence (BI)—which included two associated sub-categories; business analytics and big data, enterprise resource planning (ERP) and customer relationship management (CRM).
A host of “Other” responses included human resource management systems (HRMS), network security, manufacturing and distribution logistics, cloud management toolsets, technology business management (TBM), and business process management (BPM) workflow software.
Marketing automation, often considered an extension of CRM, also showed up prominently, though to a lesser degree than the above named categories. TBM, an emerging category focused on the tracking and optimization of IT costs, showing up as a frequent choice under “Others” was an eye-opener—and served to illustrate the increasing number of organizations that are seeking to gain more visibility and control over their IT spend, especially in the context of the current economic headwinds.
Next Planned Software Purchase, Q1 2016
While past predictions expected categories such as BI, CRM and ERP to reach $143 billion, 18.4 billion and 32.6 billion by 2016 respectively, those predictions still seem to be on target. In speaking with SelectHub end-users, even though current market conditions have done little to curb appetite for these high-growth software categories, the same conditions have imposed a higher level of financial scrutiny within organizations. Intolerance to failure and low ROI has never been higher.
Given that these areas are relatively mature with over a hundred vendors per category, buyers would be well served to seek vendors with a track-record in their industry and company size, along with product functionality compatible with their core requirements, usually uncovered via comprehensive RFIs and RFPs prior to making a purchase.