Worldwide IT spending is projected to surpass $3tn in 2007, according to industry analyst Gartner.
The figure represents an eight per cent increase on last year, and spending for 2008 is forecast grow 5.5 per cent to reach $3.3tn.
Gartner warned that, as a result, IT leaders must be able to respond more quickly to change than ever before.
Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president and global head of research at Gartner, suggested that IT leaders should create two IT budgets for 2008.
The first should reflect the same kind of marginal growth prepared during the past six years, while the second should assume the need to cut costs in response to the possible arrival of a recession.
"The business plans that you had in June are probably not going to completely address the changed conditions of your business in November," Sondergaard told an audience of 6,000 IT decision makers.
"Together with your business colleagues and your chief executive you are going to have to deliver new efficiencies, new innovations and new ideas to sustain profitability and growth. IT will be core to many of those responses.
"Simply delivering internally focused savings is not going to be enough. IT leaders need to step up to the challenge of delivering new solutions to those critical business imperatives."
On a worldwide basis, Gartner believes that IT spending will continue to grow at a rapid pace in developing countries. One third of IT spending now occurs outside North America, Western Europe and Japan.
"This development will create new innovation in IT, new competitors, new usage patterns and continued cost improvement benefits for users," Sondergaard said.
As IT moves east and south, it will mostly affect the growing areas of the industry, the analyst stated.
End-user spending will move towards software, services and all aspects of mobility. These categories made up 57 per cent of spending in 2006, and will reach 60 per cent in 2008 and 63 per cent in 2011.
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