Public sector invests in IT to manage Covid

Global governments are increasing spend on IT services and software to manage the impact of Covid-19, according to research.

The research by Gartner has forecast that global government spending on IT overall will be $438bn in 2020, down 0.6% on last year. 

Spending on telecommunication services, devices and data was forecast to drop in 2020. However, IT services and software were the only segments on track to show growth.

Gartner predicted services would continue to be the largest IT spending segment among governments in 2020, while spending on software will have the strongest growth, an increase of 4.5% in 2020.

Irma Fabular, senior research director at Gartner, said: “Government organisations are accelerating IT spending on digital public services, public health, social services, education, and workforce reskilling in support of individuals, families and businesses that are heavily impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

Priorities for spending are likely to include spending on supply chain predictability, medical research and IT infrastructure security solutions, Gartner added.

Digital government services, data and analytics, cybersecurity as well as citizen engagement and experience would also be spending targets for the public sector, it said.

Less urgent IT projects, such as enterprise resource planning and robotics process automation would be delayed “to make room for immediate and critical spending in digital workplace support, public health response and economic growth”, Fabular said. 

Gartner added the largest government IT spending will be in North America, reaching $191bn this year, followed by Western Europe, $94bn and Greater China, $39bn.

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