The Future of Enterprise Software: IDC Names Eight Macro-Trends Reshaping the Industry

FRAMINGHAM, MA – OCTOBER 17, 2005 – In a new Insight, IDC detects repeating patterns of significance from the cavalcade of mergers, products, partnerships, and technologies on the enterprise software market radar. The competitive and high-IQ nature of software technology guarantees that the tide of significant advancements in the enterprise software industry will not likely be stemmed in the foreseeable future. Even in the post-bubble burst era, when the level of venture capital in the software industry seems like a drizzle compared to the prolonged downpour of the mid-to-late 1990s, the flow of change, innovation, and investment continues.

"With our enterprise software macro-trends, IDC has delineated significant industry movements, without the hype, in major business areas of IT, including application user experience, supplier ecosystems, business intelligence/analytics, IT management, IT infrastructure, information management, and legal," says Evan Quinn, Group Vice President, Applications Research.

What differentiates a macro-trend from a mere trend is the scope of impact. A macro-trend cuts a swath through the software industry's silos, affecting the industry cross-region, cross-vendor, cross-market, cross-vertical industry, and cross-customer. IDC has named eight macro-trends that are operating in today's enterprise software industry and will continue to impact the industry for many years to come. They are:

— Enterprise Workplace

— Enterprise Solutions Platform

— Intelligent Process Automation

— IT Life-Cycle Management

— Information Governance

— Intellectual Property Management

— Dynamic IT Infrastructure

— Virtualization

"The macro-trends foreshadow major disruptions in the software industry. For example, enterprise solutions platform highlights a shift away from ERP suites as the center of gravity in applications. Intelligent process automation speaks to the rising importance of operational decisions as the target for improvements in business efficiency. And the pull of compliance brings renewed attention to information governance across the enterprise. IDC software analysts are teaming up across research areas to explore the implications of these disruptions to established practices and market players," adds Henry Morris, Group Vice President and General Manager for Integration, Development, and Application Strategies (IDeAS) research group.

These macro-trends identify fundamental metamorphoses in the nature of software solutions, how IT works, and the relationships between buyers and suppliers. As customers, and particularly CIOs, as well as software vendors and their value-added channel partners gaze over the long-term landscape of enterprise software, understanding such fundamental macro-trends may make the difference between success and failure.

IDC's Insight, Software Macro-Trends: Reshaping Enterprise Software (IDC #34006), delineates the top software macro-trends currently impacting the enterprise software market, providing a definition for each macro-trend as well as a related high-level customer/market impact analysis.

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About IDC

IDC is the premier global market intelligence and advisory firm in the information technology and telecommunications industries. We analyze and predict technology trends so that our clients can make strategic, fact-based decisions on IT purchases and business strategy. Over 700 IDC analysts in 50 countries provide local expertise and insights on technology markets. Business executives and IT managers have relied for 40 years on our advice to make decisions that contribute to the success of their organizations.

IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. Additional information can be found at www.idc.com .

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