Study: Despite Economic Challenges, IT Spending Still a Key Priority for Governments

Federal, state and local IT officials plan to use available funds to modernize technology, train staff, improve overall operations.

by / February 12, 2010

As the technology landscape continues to shift, federal, state and local governments across the U.S. refuse to let the current economic strains hinder IT spending plans, according to research released by the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA).

CompTIA's Government IT Spending Plans study notes that federal, state and local governments spend more than $100 billion a year on IT products and services, and in the next 12 months, they expect to invest in a range of new technology: desktop computers, laptop PCs, infrastructure hardware, software upgrades and security solutions topped the lists.

But while governments on all levels share similar economic challenges, they have individual IT needs. On the federal level, 58 percent of the respondents seek to keep up with the changing technology landscape, compared to 41 percent for local government. State governments want to upgrade outdated IT systems and improve interoperability. And the most pressing need for local governments is to enhance the technical skills of workers.

Here are three other noteworthy findings from the study:

o 1 in 3 government IT professionals expect to implement a social networking initiative in the next 12 months independent of any stimulus funds their agency may receive.

o 68 percent of government IT decision-makers/influencers would consider small or medium vendors or IT solution providers that meet their needs, but nearly half of them stated that they would mainly work with companies they've worked with previously.

o Among government agencies that expect to allocate funds for staff training in 2010, 41 percent expect to use some type of online training program.

The survey went out at the end of 2009 to 542 IT decision-makers across all levels of government in the U.S. The full report is available to CompTIA members only. Check out the complete release here.