Press Release

STAMFORD, Conn., October 13, 2008 View All Press Releases

Gartner Says IT Spending to Slow in 2009, But Continued Growth Reflects Critical Role of Technology to Business Performance

Analysts Discuss the Future of IT during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo 2008, October 12-16, in Orlando

Global economic problems are impacting IT budgets, however, the IT industry will not see the dramatic reductions that were seen during the bust, according to Gartner, Inc. At that time, budgets were slashed from mid double-digit growth to low single-digit growth.

“In a worst case scenario, our research indicates an IT spending increase of 2.3 percent in 2009, down from our earlier projection of 5.8 percent,” said Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president at Gartner and global head of Research. “Developed economies, especially the United States and Western Europe, will be the worst affected, but emerging regions will not be immune. Europe will experience negative growth in 2009, the United States and Japan will be flat.”

Mr. Sondergaard provided the latest outlook for the IT industry during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo, which is taking place here through October 16. Gartner said the events of the past two weeks will have an impact on IT budgets in the fourth quarter, but it will not change 2008 substantially.

The IT industry went through more dramatic reductions during, and after, the recession of 2001. Mr. Sondergaard said many lessons were learned.

“We learned that in tumultuous times, CEOs want their executives and managers to be advisors and counselors, not just great implementers of directions given to them,” Mr. Sondergaard said. “What they want now most of all is agile leadership. Leadership that can guide us through simultaneous cost control and expansion at the same time.”

Organizations now view IT as a way to transform their businesses and adopt operating models that are much leaner. Other reasons that IT will not see more severe reductions include:

IT is embedded in running all aspects of the business

  • The shift to multi-year IT programs aligned with business, and they are difficult to cut immediately
  • IT spending decreases lag the economy by at least two quarters

Follow news, photos and video coming from Symposium/ITxpo on FriendFeed at and on Twitter at

Gartner analysts are discussing the key issues facing the IT industry during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo. This event is the IT industry's largest and most-strategic conference, providing business leaders with a look at the future of IT. Nearly 6,000 senior business and IT strategists will gather for the insights, tools and solutions they need to ensure their IT initiatives are key contributors to and drivers of their enterprise's success. Gartner's annual Symposium/ITxpo events are key components of attendees' annual planning efforts. They rely on Gartner Symposium/ITxpo to gain insight into how their organizations can use IT to address business challenges and improve operational efficiency. Additional information is available at

About Gartner

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT), is the world's leading research and advisory company and a member of the S&P 500. We equip business leaders with indispensable insights, advice and tools to achieve their mission-critical priorities and build the successful organizations of tomorrow.

Our unmatched combination of expert-led, practitioner-sourced and data-driven research steers clients toward the right decisions on the issues that matter most. We're trusted as an objective resource and critical partner by more than 12,000 organizations in more than 100 countries—across all major functions, in every industry and enterprise size.

To learn more about how we help decision makers fuel the future of business, visit

Comments or opinions expressed on this blog are those of the individual contributors only, and do not necessarily represent the views of Gartner, Inc. or its management. Readers may copy and redistribute blog postings on other blogs, or otherwise for private, non-commercial or journalistic purposes. This content may not be used for any other purposes in any other formats or media. The content on this blog is provided on an "as-is" basis. Gartner shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of the content or use of this blog.