European Users Ready to Invest in IT Process Automation as Cost of IT Operations Comes Under Scrutiny, Says IDC

LONDON – March 30, 2009 – As the economic crisis continues, reducing the cost of IT operations is a key consideration for many European organizations, and decision makers are actively addressing this issue. New IDC research indicates that many organizations will likely turn to IT process automation to improve the cost effectiveness of IT operations.

In a recent survey of IT decision makers in more than 500 European organizations, almost 50% of respondents said investment in IT process automation was a likely response to the financial pressure they are currently experiencing. Also, respondents who see reduction of IT headcount or centralization of IT resources as a likely crisis response are considerably more likely to automate IT processes.

"Our research shows that European organizations of all sizes are now more seriously considering investments in IT process automation than was previously the case," said Martin Canning, VP, software and services research, IDC EMEA. "IT organizational change is fueling interest in process automation. IT groups may be faced with having to continue to deliver existing levels of service to their organizations, but with fewer personnel. Employing process automation techniques is likely to be their best shot at achieving this."

The study also found that:

— 25% of organizations surveyed said reduction of IT headcount was a distinct possibility – in the U.K. and France the proportion was closer to 33%.

— Larger organizations show a stronger likelihood to invest in IT process automation, but smaller and medium-sized organizations also show a strong interest.

"There are definite opportunities here for IT vendors such as BMC, CA, HP, IBM, and Opalis," said Patrik Bihammar, research manager, infrastructure software, IDC. "Now is the time for these vendors to push the IT process automation message in all its guises, and match their market messages with the realities of IT organizational change that many European organizations are facing."

Enterprise Investment Reality Check 2009: European Organizations Look to IT Process Automation as a Response to the Economic Crisis(IDC #HI52R9, March 2009) examines these results in more detail. The study also offers advice to end users considering IT process automation, and provides recommendations to IT vendors on how best to capitalize on this market.

About IDC

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 1000 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries worldwide. For more than 44 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company.

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