Gartner: 2021 IT spending to near $100b as growth returns

According to new forecast data from Gartner, Australian IT spending is set to grow 4.1 percent to $98.3 billion this year.

This is not only a return to growth after a 1.1 percent dip in 2020, but surpasses the pre-pandemic 2019 spend of $95.5 billion.

This growth is set to be across all spending segments, with the highest coming from devices at 9 percent, and enterprise software at 7.3 percent as, according to Gartner, organisations shift their focus to providing a more comfortable, innovative and productive environment for their workforce.

“Last year, IT spending took the form of a ‘knee jerk’ reaction to enable a remote workforce in a matter of weeks. As hybrid work takes hold, CIOs will focus on spending that enables innovation, not just task completion,” said distinguished research vice president John-David Lovelock.

The forecast predicts that spending will break past $100 million in 2022 as enterprise software reaches 10 percent growth followed by IT services at 4.9 percent.

Globally, Gartner predicts IT spending to total US$4.1 trillion (approx. AU$5.4 trillion) in 2021, an increase of 8.4 percent from 2020.

“IT no longer just supports corporate operations as it traditionally has, but is fully participating in business value delivery,” said Lovelock added. 

“Not only does this shift IT from a back-office role to the front of business, but it also changes the source of funding from an overhead expense that is maintained, monitored and sometimes cut, to the thing that drives revenue.”

Concerning global growth, Gartner said that recovery across countries, vertical industries and IT segments will vary significantly, prompting a K-shape economic recovery. 

From an industry perspective, banking and securities and insurance spending will closely resemble pre-pandemic levels as early as 2021, while retail and transportation won’t see the same recovery until closer to 2023.

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