IDC FERS Survey Identifies Cybersecurity as a Top Investment Priority in the Future of Industry Ecosystems

NEEDHAM, Mass.--()--Powered by the platform economy that emerged over the past five years, industry business models are transforming from linear-based value chains to integrated ecosystems by leveraging shared data and insights, applications, and operations and expertise. In the future of industry ecosystems, organizations must continue to recognize and react to disruptive trends by forming – or strengthening – partnerships that extend beyond their respective industries to generate value, build resiliency, foster innovation, and anticipate threats and opportunities. Businesses that invest in their ecosystems – treating them as value-enabling building blocks – will be better able to adjust to market changes and identify competitive opportunities.

Recent results from the Future Enterprise Resiliency and Spending (FERS) Survey from International Data Corporation (IDC) found that future of industry ecosystems technology investments are still early stage, with cybersecurity upgrades continuing to be the primary IT enabler, as organizations extend their ecosystems inside and outside their industries and move to shared data, applications, and operations business models. Investments in customer data management and systems integration followed closely behind.

While cybersecurity was identified as the top investment area across all regions, it was not uniform – 46% of North America respondents identified cybersecurity as a priority, driven by high levels of investment in cloud applications and infrastructure. In contrast, only 28% and 32% of respondents in EMEA and Asia/Pacific identified cybersecurity as a top investment area.

Lagging far behind in the survey results were investments in artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML). In North America, only 13% of respondents identified AI/ML as an investment priority; survey results in Asia/Pacific (15%) and EMEA (19%) were similar. Investments in blockchain and edge-based cloud technologies were also relatively low priorities across all regions.

"We are still in a version 1.0 phase of IT investment for the future of industry ecosystems," said Jeffrey Hojlo, research vice president, Future of Industry Ecosystems & Product Innovation Strategies. "As digital transformation initiatives mature to include a varied set of external partners and expertise, organizations will expand investment beyond cybersecurity to address requirements for innovation, data monetization, and sustainability through cloud-based applications, analytics, customer data management, and technologies."

On February 8, IDC will host a Future of Industry Ecosystems webinar, Industry Ecosystems Reorient for Purpose, Profit, and Digital Transformation, that looks at how a greater proportion of an organization's ability to generate value will be tied to its participation in a new economy and new ecosystems. To register for this complimentary webinar, featuring Jeffrey Hojlo, please visit:

The IDC report, Top IT Investments for Industry Ecosystems by Global Region (IDC #US48408921), provides additional detail and context about the FERS survey data on investment priorities for industry ecosystems.

About the IDC FERS Survey
The worldwide FERS survey series explores a range of topics related to IT spending priorities, digital-first transformations, technology transitions, and organizational priorities in the areas of IT skills and governance. Launched to provide insights into reactions to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, monthly FERS surveys continue to monitor concerns related to supply chain disruptions, inflation, labor shortages, and COVID variants. The data presented helps technology leaders in the Americas, Europe, and Asia/Pacific understand their peer group's deployment intentions with current insights into the use, adoption and purchasing of technology to enhance enterprise agility and intelligence.

About IDC's Future of Industry Ecosystems Practice
IDC's Future of Industry Ecosystems research practice helps organizations recognize that their ability to generate value will increasingly be tied to participation in a new digital economy. New business models will emerge, accompanied by new customer requirements and ways of operating, which will spur the creation of new digital ecosystems that leverage software platforms to deliver scale and speed.

To learn more about all nine of IDC's Future of X research practices, please visit

About IDC
International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. With more than 1,100 analysts worldwide, IDC offers global, regional, and local expertise on technology, IT benchmarking and sourcing, and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. IDC's analysis and insight helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based technology decisions and to achieve their key business objectives. Founded in 1964, IDC is a wholly owned subsidiary of International Data Group (IDG), the world's leading tech media, data, and marketing services company. To learn more about IDC, please visit Follow IDC on Twitter at @IDC and LinkedIn. Subscribe to the IDC Blog for industry news and insights.


Michael Shirer

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IDC's Future Enterprise Resiliency and Spending (FERS) Survey found that industry ecosystems technology investments are still early stage.

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Michael Shirer