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Five Trends In Enterprise Software

February 8, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

The analyst firm that seems to know everything about everything in the world of technology, or at least plays one on the web, Gartner, has identified five trends impacting the enterprise software industry long-term. The firm is predicting the enterprise software market will surpass $253.7 billion in revenue in 2011 – not an insignificant sum by any measure. Where is all of this cash headed?

The enterprise software marketplace constantly changing and adjusting, but Gartner says globalization, implementation, modernization, socialization and verticalization, will be driving the industry long term. The Gartner study indicates:

  • Globalization: This encompasses market consolidation and technology convergence trends, as well as the connected society, vendor mergers, and acquisitions. Gartner predicts significant technology and vendor consolidation during the next several years will reshape the current landscape. During this period of market disruption, highly fragmented software markets will become more structured and marked by an extensive reduction of vendors. Even though organizations compete globally, localization requirements — including languages, cultures and laws — must be supported.
  • Implementation: How organizations procure and deliver software is being challenged with cloud-computing, platform as a service (PaaS) and SaaS, coupled with pervasive and mobile access. The demand for cloud-based solutions will continue throughout the next several years. Mobile solutions have led to the opening of many new industry-based market opportunities, such as mobile banking, mobile commerce and remote healthcare diagnostics.
  • Modernization: Enterprises continue to migrate to open-source software (OSS) and SOA as older applications and systems become more costly to upgrade and maintain. Aligned with the modernization trend, automating business processes and streamlining workflows continue to gain traction. Enterprises are expecting to provide significant resources in 2011 to upgrade all types of systems and software, ranging from personal productivity tools, to build-run-manage infrastructure software, to user-driven applications. Virtualization is a key modernization factor.
  • Socialization: Use of social media and networking continues to gain traction. In the trend of socialization, which includes personalization, collaboration and content in the context of user-defined activities, Gartner predicts that unified communications and collaboration will see increased adoption in 2012, and context-aware and presence-based computing will gain more traction in 2013.
  • Verticalization: This trend involves a cycle of horizontal software applications becoming more customized and catered toward specific industries. In deploying new software technologies, it is common for vendors to initially provide generalized technology that, over time, can then give rise to more industry-specific and line-of-business features. Examples are communications-enabled business processes and composite content applications.

In addition to identifying broad technology trends,  Gartner also noted that business intelligence, collaboration, content management, social software and supply chain management will be the top software growth areas in 2011. Given the recent velocity of solutions emerging in this space, it seems that vendors agree with analysts’ assessment.

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