C-level executive at Maple Hawthorn Ltd
- Demand trends among IT departments as workers increasingly work from home
- Software and hardware requirements to facilitate working from home
- Implications of working from home on IT infrastructures and additional spend required
- Issues in the supply chain for hardware technology
- The novel coronavirus pandemic's impact on wider IT spend and budgets
How are you assessing the short-term demand spike for software and hardware related to working from home, due to the novel coronavirus pandemic? How is it affecting IT budgets and spend among CIOs [chief information officers]?
You mentioned that companies in areas such as consulting – whose employee bases already include a significant portion of remote workers – are only experiencing around a 15-20% increase in investment to roll out increased working from home. However, the portion of the market with mature working from home capabilities is presumably small. Do you expect over 3o-50% short-term budget increases to support working from home in most of the market?
How would you split remote working budget increases across hardware such as laptops and headsets, software and areas such as networking and security?
Have you observed any supply shortages in any hardware areas? Are any products or brands experiencing constraints? How is pricing from resellers and distributors compensating for any shortages?
Could you outline additional costs in networking infrastructure and security to support working from home? We discussed bandwidth, but what about investment in VPNs [virtual private networks]?
Could virtual desktops negate the need for VPNs? Do you expect companies to increasingly turn to software such as Citrix or TeamViewer rather than investing in VPNs?
Could you highlight any differentiated infrastructure impacts among Citrix, TeamViewer and BlackBerry? You mentioned that technology which is light to run on a laptop is going to increase in demand.
Could short- and long-term trends towards working from home accelerate cloud adoption by businesses?
You mentioned that IT teams are seeking to reduce costs. Do you predict any areas of IT spend that will be under particular pressure now or as we move towards the end of the year?
You mentioned core ERP transformation projects are going to come under pressure. Could CRM [customer relationship management] and HCM [human capital management] solution budgets to be constrained too? Or do you expect ERP to be the primary source of shifted spend?
Do you predict similar network security spend increases across sub-areas? Could growth be differentiated among firewall endpoint, e-mail security and identity and access management to facilitate remote working?
You mentioned identity management as a focus area. Players here include Okta, but also more comprehensive solutions such as CyberArk. Do you expect similar demand across Okta- and CyberArk-style solutions, given that Okta has a more direct impact on remote workers being able to access core documents and workflows?
Would you be concerned for ERP players such as SAP and Oracle? While they have a very large install base so are well shielded, these companies have focused on transitioning customers away from legacy ERP systems – in the case of SAP, towards S/4HANA and the S/4HANA Cloud. Could the 2020-21 operating environment dampen these companies’ customer conversion prospects?
How long do you expect the short-term spike in demand for remote worker facilitation to carry on for? Do you think that by the start of H2 2020 most companies will already have made the investments they need to make? Could demand taper off after that?
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