Print.IT Reseller - issue 93

01732 759725 40 VOX POP According to Gartner, economic recovery with high expectations for digital market prosperity will continue to boost technology investments in 2022. The analyst house’s latest forecast expects worldwide IT spending to total $4.5 trillion in 2022, an increase of 5.1% from 2021 Spending on IT services set to grow Mike Barron, Managing Director, SYNAXON UK “A skills shortage causes the same problems as a product shortage. If you can’t get the equipment you need to upgrade, your project has to go on hold. If you don’t have or can’t buy-in the skills you need to implement a new system, or migrate to the cloud, you have to delay your plans. Otherwise, there is more of a risk that your project will fail. “The short-term issue is how to get those projects moving and that’s inflating the price of technical people in the market and causing a lot of movement between businesses at the moment. From Gartner contends CIOs are now in a position to move beyond the critical, short-term projects over the past two years and focus on the longterm. Simultaneously, staff skills gaps, wage inflation and the war for talent will push CIOs to rely more on consultancies and managed service firms to pursue their digital strategies. Gartner forecasts that the IT services segment – which includes consulting and managed services – is expected to have the second highest spending growth in 2022, reaching $1.3 trillion, up 7.9 per cent from 2021. Business and technology consulting spending, specifically, is expected to grow 10 per cent in 2022. With this in mind, PrintIT Reseller asked some of the industry’s leading vendors how they are changing go-to-market strategies and their offering to capitalise on the opportunity to help organisations pursue their digital strategies, and support them as they move into 2022. a longer-term perspective, the challenge for businesses is knowing how far ahead and how much they should invest in IT skills and people. It’s not an easy conundrum and I suspect it will continue to be a major issue for some time. “Taking a more positive view, it’s certainly driving more end-user businesses to look at handing over core IT functions such as print to managed services providers. The great thing about managed print for partners is that you don’t really need new skills to offer a service – the barrier to entry is quite low and there are simple propositions available from third-party players.” Andy Brown, Technical Services Director, Tech Data “This is a huge challenge. With the return to the workplace and projects reigniting, we’ve seen higher attrition rates amongst technical staff in partners. It’s something we are trying to address in a positive and pro-active way. “As a value-added distributor, we are experienced in supporting partners and augmenting their capabilities with outsourced skills and services. We’ve made investments to guide resellers through short-term skills gaps, as well as helping with the training aspects associated with skilling-up new recruits. “While that’s all great, in the longerterm, partners will need to develop and maintain a sustainable culture that will prevent, or at least slow down, rates of attrition. There is a clear shift in the desire for ‘softer benefits’ – i.e. flexible working, private healthcare, and learning and development opportunities. “In our own business, we have invested in individual development for technical colleagues – in areas such as hybrid cloud, for example. We’re extending that out and offering partners that same programme, and directly engaging with partner technicians to support their development. “It’s really important to give technical people proper routes for progression and ensure they feel valued. At Tech Data, we operate servant leadership principles to foster a sustainable culture within the business where co-workers understand that their input truly makes a difference. Alongside this, we build organisation health through inclusive workplace continued... Mike Barron Andy Brown