Press Release

STAMFORD, Conn., March 23, 2009 View All Press Releases

Gartner Says Prices of Services in Outsourcing to Decline by 5 Percent to 20 Percent Through 2010

Future of Outsourcing to Be Discussed at Gartner Outsourcing & Vendor Management Summits in, Las Vegas, London and Tokyo

Prices of IT services in outsourcing are anticipated to shrink by 5 percent to 20 percent during 2009 and 2010, according to Gartner, Inc. Analysts said IT outsourcing prices are likely to decrease during the next two years due to the uncertain economic climate, IT budget constraints and general market consciousness.

Gartner said that this fall in prices will occur due to increasing competition in the market between traditional and new providers as more providers compete aggressively to keep revenue growth on target, while ensuring margins. Furthermore, cost-focused buying behaviors in the current economic phase will be a key factor behind the reductions for IT infrastructure outsourcing services from 2009 to 2010, with a great variability based on each single deal.

“Regardless of the relative strength of outsourcing during a recession, many clients are reporting intense discussion with their vendors and renegotiation of contracts for Terms and Conditions (T&Cs) Service Level Agreements (SLAs), fees, volumes and low-cost offshore delivery locations,” said Claudio Da Rold, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner. “These items are under scrutiny to identify satisfactory concessions to further reduce the cost of services on a case-by-case basis.”

Mr. Da Rold added that Indian offshore providers have been coming under significant pressure for pricing reductions due to the Mumbai terrorist attack, the scandal at Satyam, rupee exchange rate fluctuations, and continued wage inflation and attrition levels.

To reach the agreement on the potential price impact, Gartner analysts started from measures (price points, benchmarks) of the price reductions associated with the last recessionary period (2001 to 2003) and added current trends and current price/cost measures. Then, a panel of analysts agreed on the reported price trends for 2009 and 2010 in North America and Europe (see Table 1). The Gartner analysts calculated the percentages based on the economic pressure or recession, and other applicable trends, including industrialization of services, clients' SLA/T&C renegotiations and offshore service dynamics.

Table 1
Potential Average Outsourcing Price Reductions in 2009/2010, North America and European Union

IT Infrastructure Outsourcing Services

Average Outsourcing Price Reductions

Data center services

5% to 15%

Desktop/help desk services

5% to 10%

Network services

10% to 15%

Application hosting services

10% to 20%

Source: Gartner (February 2009)

“These are not ‘price list reductions’ but represent an overall price reduction on infrastructure outsourcing deals that may apply to news deals and, albeit only partially, to renegotiated deals,” said Mr. Da Rold. "It’s important to remember that price reductions will apply with great variability across geographies, vertical industries and client size with regard to specific deals. Providers are not reporting any across-the-board price reductions, but rather will address each client situation individually.”

Gartner advises clients and providers to avoid stretching their positions to the extreme as pushing for an extremely low price will not make providers safer, deliver good services or promote a positive relationship. Not accepting a renegotiation of terms and price in a tough economy will not contribute to client’s viability. Also, especially in hard times, there is only one viable balance and that is win-win; for if one side loses, the other loses too.

Additional information is available in the Gartner report “Potential Impact of Economic Downturn on IT Infrastructure Outsourcing Prices, Q109.” The report is available on Gartner’s Web site at

Gartner analysts will further discuss outsourcing and IT services trends at Gartner's Outsourcing Summits held in Tokyo (April 20-21), Las Vegas (May 4-6) and London (June 15-16). These Summits provide a comprehensive view of the entire outsourcing market — infrastructure, application and business process outsourcing, global delivery, and the use of offshore providers, as well as issues and trends about new delivery models, such as SaaS. For complete event details on these events, please visit:

Gartner Outsourcing & Vendor Management Summit — Las Vegas:

Gartner Outsourcing & IT Services Summit — London:

Gartner Outsourcing Summit — Tokyo:

Members of the media can register for the Summits by contacting Christy Pettey

About Gartner

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