On-Line Model is Key to Answer Midmarket Need for a Closer Relationship with IT Service Providers, IDC Reveals

FRAMINGHAM, MA – May 12, 2008 – Growing at twice the rate of the large business services market, the midmarket (companies with 100 to 1,000 employees) represents a rising opportunity for services providers. Vendors of IT and IT services, traditionally focused on larger customers, must better understand the midmarket to enhance their ability to communicate the value of their services to the specific midmarket audience.

According to a new IDC special study, key needs and wants of midmarket companies include the following:

* Midmarket customers want a closer relationship with their technology providers.

* Most midmarket companies have dedicated IT resources, and a completely standardized “solution” is generally less preferable than one that allows for some customization, either by an external services provider or the customer itself.

* In addition to projects related to security, growth initiatives such as improving customer service and sales force efficiencies will be undertaken in the next year and drive IT spend.

* Using multiple best of breed providers is the most often used procurement strategy, but many customers would like to consolidate vendors.

"The midmarket need for a direct relationship with IT vendors is the most surprising and interesting finding of this study," said Rebecca Segal, vice president, Global Services Markets and Trends at IDC. "Leveraging the hosted, on-line model would be key to achieve that."

"The midmarket is still not well understood by services firms," added Merle Sandler, research manager for IDC's SMB group. "Midmarket customers want access to the best services available, but also want the ease of use gained from one provider. The future 'aggregator' role supported by the on-line model, will allow customers to have their cake and eat it too."

IDC's new Special Study entitled, Customer Insight Into How to Develop, Sell, and Deliver IT Services to the Midmarket (IDC # 212131) helps services providers better understand, develop, market, and sell IT services to the midmarket. This study is based on primary research with over 500 mid-sized end-user companies in the United States. The data was originally published as a multiclient study in 2007.

To purchase this document, call IDC's sales hotline at 508-988-7988 or email sales@idc.com.

About IDC

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 900 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 43 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com.

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