Enterprises should put contingency plans in place for a fresh economic downturn to ensure that they survive, according to Gartner.
The analyst firm said in a new report that the last recession was not predicted, and that chief information officers (CIOs) could not be blamed for being ill-prepared.
However, no excuses will be accepted should another such event occur in the next two years.
"Just the potential for a second business downturn should be sufficient to compel CIOs to plan for another business downturn," said Ken McGee, vice president and Gartner fellow.
"However, most CIOs will not have a response strategy prepared if a second business downturn occurs."
McGee explained that CIOs should be planning now, and must draw on their experiences of the last recession to ensure they survive the next.
"As questions, or even doubts, grow about the ability for economies to recover, CIOs in 2010 have one advantage over their predecessors. For the first time in the history of the IT industry, more than 90 per cent of CIOs today possess extremely recent and practical experience of dealing with a recession," he said.
"In light of this fact, we strongly urge these CIOs to use their recent experiences by preparing their entire organisations should another economic downturn occur within the next 12 to 18 months."
Gartner has made a number of recommendations, including establishing guidelines for a recession so that organisations can react and share any recovery plans across the business as soon as necessary.
The analyst firm also suggested that companies should consider shelving some IT plans, at least for this year. Firms should determine which projects could be postponed, and which should be cancelled.
"Our bottom-line advice is to prepare and rehearse the 'second recession' plan, and hope that you never have to use it," McGee said.
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