According to new study from IDG, existing vendors may no longer have an edge as industry standards and customer demands change

Boston, MA — January 13, 2022 — IDG, Communications Inc., the global leader in technology media, data and marketing services, today released its 2022 Role & Influence of the Technology Decision-Maker report. The research provides insight into the progression of technology in business, as well as an in-depth analysis of who is involved in the IT purchase process and the information sources they rely on.

Since IDG’s latest report in 2020, the pandemic catalyzed rapid digital transformation. As a result, the majority of IT decision-makers (ITDMs) expect their budgets to either increase (51%) or remain stable (39%) over the next 12 months.

“Change is afoot among B2B technology buyers,” said Stacey Raap, Marketing & Research Manager, IDG Communications, Inc. “With digital transformation accelerating due to COVID-19, we’re seeing greater investments in technology, giving IT decision-makers more money to work with. The coming year could see more RFPs in the tech sector, given the perception that existing solutions are in need of a reboot. Our report is a valuable resource for tech vendors to understand the decisions made around their products and services to gain an advantage in this competitive landscape.”

Here are some of the report’s findings:

No advantage for existing vendors?

According to IDG’s findings, nearly half (45%) of technology purchases are expected to be made from a new vendor, with the main reason being that ITDMs no longer think that their current product or service meets their business needs (44%).

Whether or not an ITDM will seek a new vendor depends largely on the technology they are purchasing. More than half (54%) of data & analytics purchases will be from a new vendor, while only 27% of desktop/laptop purchases will be from a new vendor.

Where will tech budgets be allocated?

Over the next 6-12 months, most technology purchases will be either an addition to the business’ tech stack or upgrades made to their existing technology. A closer look at the factors influencing strategy determined:

  • ITDMs are faced with finding a balance between innovation and maintaining business as usual. The organization’s IT strategy is driven by status quo tasks and keeping the lights on (34%), responding to internal events (33%) and responding to external events (29%).
  • Both internal and external factors are driving IT strategy. When thinking about the internal events driving IT strategy, ITDMs say that process changes (57%) – followed by reorgs (33%) and internal skills shortages (32%) – are most prominent. For external events, the top factors are customer requests (49%), market changes (47%) and competitive threats (38%).

Influencing the tech purchase process

The average number of individuals who influence the tech purchase process remains steady at 20 people – 10 IT and 10 LOB. Again, this varies by the technology being purchased. On average, there are 24 individuals involved in cloud purchases (13 IT and 11 LOB), but only 16 in desktop/laptop purchases (7 IT and 9 LOB).

The CIO or top IT Executive is the top leader involved in each stage of the purchasing process, except for evaluating products and services. Instead, this is where the CIO relies heavily on IT staff, IT management, and engineers. Further, IT management strongly influences the purchase process in regards to evaluating vendors, recommending and selecting vendors and selling the technologies internally.

When asked about the likelihood of using an IT consultant when making a technology purchase, 91% responded that they are likely. ITDMs look to IT consultants when purchasing IT services (45%), cloud products or services (41%) and security solutions (37%). Although, the decision to rely on an IT consultant may vary based on the company size.

Additionally, IDG found that 76% of ITDMs spend more time consuming content from well-known and trusted brands because they are confident their time will be well spent on these sources.

  • On average, ITDMs download six pieces of trusted content to aid them in the purchase process. More than half (51%) rely upon technology content sites to enhance working knowledge. Other top information sources ITDMs rely upon include:
    • White papers (45%), webcasts/webinars (39%) and technology vendors via phone, email or video conference (39%).
    • Vendor awareness highly impacts an ITDMs decision to engage with that brand’s content, specifically when it comes to product reviews (71%) and case studies (56%).
    • Video is a widely sought-after form of content ITDMs watch for business purposes (96%). They are likely to watch in-depth product reviews (46%), industry research/tech analyst reports (41%) and how-to videos (41%).
  • ITDMs have plans for in-person work-related events. 57% of ITDMs have plans to attend an in-person work-related event over the next 12 months (23% are unsure and 21% say no). This increases slightly for executive IT (60%) and decreases by level (54% IT mgmt. and 49% IT pro).

For technology marketers, it’s important to connect with tech buyers where they are researching solutions for their business needs and throughout the purchase process. Learn about how you can expand your reach and engage these IT decision-makers by becoming a sponsor at one of IDG’s virtual or in-person summits or roundtables.

About the Research

IDG’s 2022 Role & Influence of the Technology Decision-Maker Research was conducted online among the audiences of IDG’s B2B brands (CIO, Computerworld, CSO, InfoWorld, and Network World) representing IT and security decision-makers involved in the IT purchase process for their organization. Results in this release are based on 646 respondents to the 35 question survey across multiple industries and countries.

Read the full report by IDG here.

About IDG Communications, Inc.

IDG Communications’ vision is to make the world a better place by enabling the right use of technology, because we believe that the right use of technology can be a powerful force for good.

IDG is a dependable editorial voice, creating quality content to generate knowledge, engagement and deep relationships with our community of the most influential technology and security decision-makers. Our premium media brands including CIO®, Computerworld®, CSO®, InfoWorld®, Macworld®, Network World®, PCWorld® and Tech Hive® engage a quality audience with essential guidance on the evolving technology landscape.

Our trusted brands, global 1st party data intelligence and MarTech platforms (KickFire and Triblio) identify and activate purchasing intent, powering our clients’ success. We simplify complex campaigns that fulfill marketers’ global ambitions seamlessly with consistency that delivers quality results.


Stacey Raap
Marketing & Research Manager
IDG Communications, Inc.