IT Is Heavily Invested in ERP, Application Consolidation Rising

A 2010 study examines the maturity of IT adoption and highlights how heavily invested ERP is in the IT ecosystem. Similarly, efforts to condense and compact application systems to save money are happening with higher frequency.

A close examination of the IT system maturity as it relates to funding finds enterprise resource planning (ERP) to be the most mature technology across a spectrum of enterprise, midsize and small companies. Out of 19 technology areas being implemented, ERP takes the cake.

"About two thirds of all organizations in the study have ERP systems and about half of the organizations are investing in these systems, either by expanding the capabilities of systems that are already in place or implementing an ERP system for the first time," wrote information technology research analyst Computer Economics in its report "Technology Trends 2010/2011."

The research from the Irvine, Calif.-based Computer Economics was conducted between January and April of this year and involved extensive surveying of 210 senior IT managers from large, midsize and small businesses.

Other technologies that companies are heavily investing in, but with lower maturity, include renewal of legacy systems, unified communications, CRM systems and mobile applications. Video conferencing has a low investment but high degree of adoption. Technologies with a smaller degree of adoption yet higher investment include Windows 7 migration, social networking and desktop virtualization. The lowest investment and adoption trends include 10G Ethernet, infrastructure in the cloud, open-source apps and RFID systems.

From the report: "Unified communications is a fast-growth, emerging technology with positive economic experience profile. On the other hand, legacy system renewal is a well-established IT initiative that seems to be attracting ongoing interest. Organizations are choosing to modernize their older applications, making them more flexible and integrated, rather than rip and replace them with new applications."

Companies are also consolidating applications with higher frequency. While application consolidation was found to have moderate investment and lower adoption, it is noted as being a trend on the rise. Sixteen percent have consolidated apps and are increasing their investment, 20 percent are planning to consolidate, and 6 percent have consolidated and are not investing any more in the initiative.

"Some organizations are turning to application consolidation amid the current pressure on IT budgets as evidenced by the fact that the percentage of first-time implementers nearly matches the percentage of organizations that previously consolidated their portfolios," wrote Computer Economics in the trend report.