EMEA demand for IT-as-a-service rises to 53%; addresses inflation and scarcity of IT profiles

Huizingen, Gent, Kontich & Leuven, 22 March 2024

Companies are increasingly moving from a CapEx to an OpEx model: in EMEA, the choice of IT-as-a-service rises from 39% to 53%. A Beltug study shows similar figures in our country: 54.8% of companies surveyed are outsourcing IT. Interestingly, 34% of the companies surveyed are also retraining existing employees.

Surveys by Beltug and Canalys show that interest in outsourcing and as-a-service services, is on the rise. The same Beltug survey also shows that inflation and lack of the right IT profiles, is impacting IT projects at end customers. Inetum, European leader in digital services and solutions, argues that IT-as-a-service can provide a solution to this.

As-a-service solutions unburden end customers. A company that opts for as-a-service IT solutions no longer has to deal with the purchase (and financing) of hardware, support, proactive management, and many other operational aspects of IT. The IT service provider takes on these tasks and the end user pays for what they consume.

Evolution from on-premise to cloud & from CapEx to OpEx mode

A survey by independent analyst Canalys in late 2023 (Chart 2) shows that 53% of EMEA IT partners surveyed , as well as 53% of global IT partners, see an increase in end-user choice of OpEx models. By the end of 2022, only 39% of EMEA IT partners chose OpEx, compared to 46% of global IT partners. The shift from a CapEx to OpEx model is consistent with the rising demand for IT-as-a-service services.

The Beltug B2B Market Study at the end of 2023 (Chart 1) shows that 23.6% of the companies surveyed in our country, keep their IT infrastructure on-premise as much as possible, i.e., a CapEx model. 18.9%, which is just slightly less, have a cloud-first strategy, i.e. a preference for the OpEx model. The majority, 56.5% go for the (hybrid) mix.

'Heavy long-term investments do not exactly benefit agility,' states Jo Leemans, Director Technologies at Inetum Belgium. 'The success of OpEx models is therefore logical. By making flexibility central to our service offering in various ways as an IT supplier, we are meeting this new, growing need of our Customers. Both for the workplace, the data center and the network," Leemans added.

IT-as-a-service as a solution to IT talent shortag

Beltug's survey brings up other interesting insights. For example, 44% of companies indicate that the shortage of IT profiles impacts their IT projects. For 82%, it slows down IT projects. 34% are betting on just completing IT projects faster to help employees work more efficiently through additional automation. Interestingly, 34% of those surveyed are also retraining existing employees.

Inflation is also having an impact on companies' IT projects. As many as 60% of large Organizations in our country postponed some IT projects. But more IT projects were also started - albeit to a lesser extent - with the intention of further increasing efficiency with additional automation.

Leemans: "Having to put automation on the back burner due to a lack of the desired workforce is a downward spiral. Because by automating one partly compensates for a shortage of personnel. By using as-a-service services, the IT supplier provides the necessary work force and the completion of the IT project in question within the planned deadline.  IT professionals at end customers thus no longer have to worry about their IT infrastructure, but can focus on their core business of successfully completing their IT projects.'


Chart 1 - Source: Report Beltug Market Study Cloud, May 202

Chart 2 - Source: Canalys, Candefero Quick Polls, EMEA October 2023 and October 202

Over Inetum

Inetum is a digital services and solutions company. The Group is present in more than 27 Countries, has nearly 28,000 employees and achieved sales of 2.4 billion euros in 2022. In a context where needs and applications are constantly reinvented, the Inetum Group supports companies and public authorities in their digital transformation by offering them a unique combination of intimacy, sector-specific organization and innovative solutions. With its multi-specialist profile, Inetum focuses its organization around 4 Global Business Lines: Inetum Consulting, Inetum Technologies, Inetum Solutions and Inetum Software.

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Linde Declercq
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