Companies worldwide in a variety of industries are realizing the importance of IT services as part of their business models and operations. Because IT is now playing an integral role in almost every industry and line of work, companies of varying sizes are looking for external support to digital operations. Working with a third-party IT services provider will help improve efficiency, drive sales, reduce unnecessary spending and enable growth into new markets.
Because IT is such a broad term, the services available to companies may seem endless. There are a few IT services being outsourced by companies that are growing in popularity because they are key to business functions, require continual maintenance or a high level of expertise, and will increase a company's competitive edge if executed properly.
Most popular services
A recent study conducted by ESG Research analyzed the trending IT services being outsourced by businesses worldwide. The top five categories of IT services frequently managed by a third-party provider are security architecture and infrastructure design, threat intelligence services, network monitoring services, security/risk management/regulatory compliance and web threat management. There are also other areas of IT outsourcing such as email security, vulnerability, penetration testing or scanning, but those are less popular worldwide.
According to the study, large organizations will outsource IT services for mundane tasks that they do not want their own staff to take on, so they can be free to work on more pressing projects. Large enterprises are also outsourcing IT services to access highly specialized skill sets for high-value projects and activities. The majority of companies are interested in supplementing their internal IT departments with outside industry expertise to learn best practices while relieving overworked staff.
Cloud service growth
Another trending IT service most companies are researching is the transition into a cloud-based operating environment. A recent IDC study regarding the IT cloud services through 2016 anticipates a 41 percent growth in demand over the next four years. Spending on IT cloud services worldwide will exceed $40 billion, closing in on $100 billion by 2016, growing at an annual compound rate of 26.4 percent.
"The IT industry is in the midst of an important transformative period as companies invest in the technologies that will drive growth and innovation over the next two to three decades," said Frank Gens, senior vice president and chief analyst at IDC. "By the end of the decade, IDC expects at least 80 percent of the industry's growth, and enterprises' highest-value leverage of IT, will be driven by cloud services and other 3rd Platform technologies."
Considering partnering for your IT services? What you need to know: