It’s halfway through 2015 and companies have determined their budgets for the rest of the year. To get a better understanding of where SAP customers stand, DSAG surveyed 256 CIOs, directors, and representatives of DSAG member companies in German-speaking countries in an online survey in December 2014 and January 2015. One person per company was surveyed, and half the participants were from companies that have between 1,000 and 5,000 employees. Twenty-four Swiss companies and 21 Austrian companies took part.
The results of the survey show positive momentum for IT budgets in 2015. Overall budgets are slated to increase by 3.5%, more than twice as much as in the previous year (1.7%); SAP budgets are rising by more than 5%. Switzerland showed an even higher increase, with investments rising by 8.8%, compared to 6% in 2014. In Austria, however, IT budgets are still declining, but spending on SAP solutions among the Austrian DSAG members will increase by 9.4%.
Let’s take a closer look at where SAP customers are spending their money in 2015.
Focusing on the Classics
As in 2014, classic SAP ERP on-premise solutions remain a top investment priority, according to nearly half of the survey respondents. Companies invest where there is a need for investment, and at the moment, this means focusing on existing business processes. Not every company needs new and innovative business models in their current situation. For some, it is more important to improve their best-practice business processes within their existing ERP systems.
Investing in the Future
While focusing on existing business solutions is undeniably important, many companies realize new and innovative processes should also be top of mind. The survey results reflect this shift, with one third of respondents planning to invest in SAP technology such as mobile applications, improved user interfaces, and analytics. SAP HANA and cloud solutions are also rising in the budgets for 17% of companies, and more than 11% are planning to invest in SAP solutions to address Industry 4.0 and the Internet of Things (IoT).
Current cloud projects are underway in a fifth of the companies surveyed. One reason for the restraint could be concern about the protection for intellectual property in the cloud. When asked about this, 59% of the companies said that uncertainty affects their investment decisions.
Consolidation, analytics, and mobility are still the top priorities for DSAG members, representing 53%, 44%, and 39%, respectively. When it comes to planned projects, modernization of user interfaces is at the head of the list for 35% of respondents.
Is It Enough?
While some companies are pioneering business process innovation, DSAG member companies are still focused on more traditional issues
surrounding SAP ERP.
To unleash innovative forces and significantly promote change in terms of digitization and IoT, allocating 20% of the budget for new business processes is a good start, but it still isn’t enough. Now that we are in the era of Industry 4.0, big data, and the cloud, SAP Business Suite 4 SAP HANA (SAP S/4HANA) is enticing, but additional successful use cases are needed to fully showcase the solution’s capabilities.