The ICT industry worldwide is ever evolving and is the catalyst for the rapid expansion of businesses worldwide. A continuous stream of new products and category innovations constantly redefine the shifting landscape. The scramble to be “Cloud” friendly and gain a piece of the hosted solutions services pie has made traditional hardware manufacturers such as Hewlett-Packard, Dell and IBM re-think their future strategies.

Statistics below show the growth of IT spending worldwide in 2015, by segment. The hardware segment grew by 6.6 percent in 2015. Total IT spending worldwide amounted to 2,178.1 billion U.S. dollars in 2015. However, it is predicted that Worldwide IT spending would grow by 0.6% in 2016 to US$3.54 Trillion.

(Source: Statista.com)

(Source: Statista.com)

The Gartner Worldwide IT Spending Forecast is the leading indicator of major technology trends across devices, IT services, data centre systems, enterprise software and telecom services markets, and across regions.

The 2015 ICT Sector Report provides in-depth analysis of New Zealand’s information and communications technology sector, and showcases New Zealand’s very strong performance in the ICT industry over the last few years. Some key highlights include growth in the IT services and software industry with employment in the sector on the rise (Source: 2015 ICT Sector Report)

Per the report technology software and services sector has been growing at the rate of 9 per cent per annum since 2008 and now contributes 1.7 per cent of GDP, according to Mr Steven Joyce, Economic Development Minister.

With changes in Microsoft’s licensing models and older operating systems such as Microsoft XP™, Vista™ and Small Business Server™ 2011 coming to end of life, the Small to Medium Term Enterprise (SME) Sector, has had to evolve and embrace the changes of the industry.

With the government’s Ultra-Fast Broadband (UFB) programme accelerating into 2016 across the country, provincial New Zealand districts such as Rotorua have been able to avail itself of cloud -based services such as Microsoft Office 365™, Hosted Solutions, Off-site backups and a host of other products and services.

Traditional ways of managing a network was to have an On Premise server which would host the organization’s Exchange, File and Print and Domain Controller. All 3rd party software would sit on the server, including Microsoft™ operating system(s). Over the last three years Microsoft Office 365™ has changed the landscape of traditional servers and removed the Exchange component off and placed it in the Cloud.

This has prompted other 3rd party software vendors such as those who provide either Accountancy, Law or Medical industry software to move away from traditional on premise applications to providing cloud computing. This applications doesn’t require installation on each individual device and can be accessed from anywhere in the world with an internet connection.

Therefore, the role of ICT companies that support the SME segment or even large Corporations have had to re-think their strategy. The skill sets required of an ICT professional is ever changing and evolving to facilitate changes in the industry, and will continue to do so.