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10/31/2007
05:38 PM
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SMB Outlook Good For Tech Spending

High priority expenditures include secured data backup, storage, disaster recovery, IP telephony, virtualization, and consolidation, according to a new CompTIA survey.

Small and mid-sized business owners are optimistic about the outlook for the next year and that's shaping technology investment plans, according to a new research report.

The Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) announced its results Wednesday from a survey that it commissioned. The survey of 724 businesses with less than 1,000 employees found that 45% of respondents expect their business to grow by more than 10% over the next 12 months. CompTIA announced its findings at its SMB Summit in Bonita Springs, Florida.

Twenty-one percent expect growth of better than 20%, and 90% of SMBs plan to add new full-time employees during that time period, the group revealed. Thirty-three percent plan to open at least one new business location, according to the survey, which polled people in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom this month.

When asked which technologies they will invest in, 29% of SMBs said they would spend on secured data backup, storage, and disaster recovery. Twenty-four percent plan to invest in IP telephony, and 19% said they will invest in server virtualization and consolidation, according to AMI-Partners' research. Eighteen percent said they will invest in Wi-Fi, while 13% planned to spend on storage area networks

"These are all solutions that allow an organization to get the most out of its technology infrastructure investment," John Venator, president and CEO of CompTIA, said in a prepared statement. "This is an important shift. Historically, SMBs tended to replace technology reactively when something went wrong. Now they are proactively looking for solutions that enable them to leverage their networks and boost productivity and efficiency."

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