Getting greater business intelligence is the key requirement for mid-market customers as they look to get greater insights into their operations to identify where trends are emerging that will support future growth.
IBM has undertaken its largest face-to-face survey of midmarket CIOs and produced a study sharing the thoughts and plans of those operating at the coalface with business analytics and cloud emerging as the two areas that will attract budget in the next couple of years.
The Essential CIO - Midmarket CIO study 2011 found that most mid market firms are braced for ongoing economic uncertainty but are doing their best to try and get a tighter grip on what they can control, their own business data and strategy.
An increase in the demand from employees to use a greater range of mobile devices is having a knock-on effect with midmarket CIOs looking at the cloud as the most appropriate way of opening up applications on a range of platforms. Half of those quizzed are more likely to make investments in this area.
But the demand for business analytics dominates the agenda with 77% looking to spend in this area over the next five years.
In practical terms that will see a growth in data warehousing, more visual dashboards and increased data analytics of both internal and customer activities.
"As the economy recovers and CIOs look more to driving transformation in their companies, their role is evolving to become more and more associated with extracting value from technology and gaining insight from complex systems, Said Ed Abrams, vice president of marketing for IBM's global midmarket business.