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European IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarks Study

Preparing a benchmark for IT spending or IT employee staffing levels can be a difficult exercise for any business. Our European IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarks study makes the job easier for IT executives in Europe by providing an IT spending framework with key ratios, statistics, and other IT cost metrics for strategic IT budget analytics. IT spending as a percent of revenue and other IT budget ratios are provided for selected industries and company sizes in Europe.

This study is a companion study to our annual IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarks study, which provides a full set of IT budgetary benchmarks and IT staffing metrics by industry sector and organizational size for private and public companies and for governmental organizations, based on our annual in-depth survey of over 200 information technology executives. This companion study for Europe should be used in conjunction with our full study to provide insight into how high-level spending and staffing benchmarks differ for European organizations.

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The Full European Study (all chapters)

Download or purchase the full study (all 10 chapters):  Save 20%.

Summary Chapters

Chapter 1: Executive Summary, Europe (Free Download)
Chapter 2: Composite Benchmarks, Europe
Chapter 3A: Benchmarks by Organization Size: Small, Europe
Chapter 3B: Benchmarks by Organization Size: Midsize, Europe
Chapter 3C: Benchmarks by Organization Size: Large, Europe

Industry Sector Benchmarks

Chapter 4: Process Manufacturing, Europe
Chapter 5: Discrete Manufacturing, Europe
Chapter 6: Retail, Europe
Chapter 7: Professional and Technical Services, Europe
Chapter 8: Food and Beverage, Europe

Intended Audience

For CIOs and consulting firms, this chapter study provides key metrics and unbiased data for you to benchmark an organization’s total IT spending and staffing levels. This study will allow you to achieve the following outcomes:

    • Benchmark your IT operational spending levels. Compare them with those of European organizations of similar size and industry sector. IT cost management ratios and other IT support metrics are provided, such as IT budget as a percent of revenue and IT budget per employee/user, allowing IT executives to highlight opportunities to reduce IT costs, optimize IT expenses, and improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and governance of the IT organization.
    • Measure your IT capital budget spend levels. We report IT capital budget as a percentage of the total IT budget, to help stakeholders understand how their IT capital spending compares to their industry peers.
    • Manage your IT staffing levels. We report the percentage of the employee head count that are users of IT and the number of users that each IT staff member supports, allowing business executives to better understand whether their IT staffing levels appear overstaffed or understaffed relative to the market.

As noted above, for a complete set of IT spending and staffing metrics, this study for Europe should be used in conjunction with our full study to provide insight into how high-level spending and staffing benchmarks differ for Europe.

Key Metrics Descriptions

This section lists all the key metrics provided in the full study for all chapters.

Demographics

In Section 1, we describe the key characteristics of the sample to establish a basis for comparison with other IT organizations. These key metrics are as follows:

    • Organization size demographics, including revenue, employees, revenue per employee, and revenue per user
    • IT spending demographics, including total IT spending, IT operational spending, IT capital budget, and IT outsourcing budget
    • Key metrics of IT intensity, including users as a percentage of employees and PCs per user

Spending by Type

In Section 2, we provide IT spending benchmarks by type of spending. These key metrics not only provide additional demographic information but also identify IT trends. They include:

    • Outsourcing as a percentage of IT budget
    • Percentage of IT spending outside IT budget
    • Cloud software as a percentage of application spending

Total IT Spending Metrics

Section 3 presents key metrics for IT spending, which includes current-year IT operational and capital spending, but excludes depreciation. These key metrics include:

    • Total IT spending as a percentage of revenue
    • Total IT spending per user
    • Total IT spending per PC
    • Personnel spending as a percentage of total IT spending

IT Operational Spending Metrics

Section 4 presents key metrics for IT operational spending. These key metrics are as follows:

    • Trend in IT operational budgets
    • Change in IT operational budgets
    • IT operational spending as a percentage of revenue
    • IT operational spending per user
    • IT operational spending per PC
    • Personnel as a percentage of IT operational spending
    • Depreciation as a percentage of IT operational budget

IT Capital Spending Metrics

Section 5 provides an analysis of IT capital budgets, specifically IT capital budget as a percentage of IT budget.

IT Staffing Metrics

In Section 6, we provide key metrics and trend data on IT staffing, specifically:

    • Employees per IT staff member
    • Users per IT staff member

European Chapter Descriptions

Chapter 1: Executive Summary (Free Download)

This chapter provides an overview of the key findings from the European study and describes the contents of the subsequent chapters. It also includes information on the study participants and the survey methodology.

    • IT Operational Budget Change from Prior Year: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • IT Operational Budget Changes: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • IT Spending as a Percentage of Revenue: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • IT Operational Spending per User: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • IT Operational Spending per PC: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • Cloud Subscription Rates: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • Outsourcing as a Percentage of Total IT Budget: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • Personnel as a Percentage of IT Operational Budget: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • IT Personnel Spending Per IT Staff Member: US and Canada vs. Europe
    • Employees Per IT Staff Member: US and Canada vs. Europe

Chapter 2: Composite Benchmarks

This chapter provides composite metrics for all of the organizations surveyed, across all industry sectors and organization sizes. The key metrics provided in this chapter are listed in the Key Metrics Descriptions section above.

Chapters 3A, 3B, and 3C: Benchmarks by Organization Size

In these three chapters, we analyze each of our IT spending and staffing metrics by organization size. This chapter classifies organization size differently than most classification schemes. We use the size of the IT operational budget, as revenue is not always a good indicator of the size of the IT operation. This enables IT organizations to compare themselves against similar-size IT organizations. We define the size categories as follows:

IT operational budgets less than $5 million

IT operational budgets between $5 million and less than $20 million

IT operational budgets $20 million or greater

Despite the fact that this is a European study, we determined organization size in US dollars. This was to ensure an apples-to-apples size comparison between our main study and the European companion study. All metrics in the study are reported in euros. To avoid the problem of having very small organizations in our sample, we have excluded respondents with less than $50 million in annual revenue.

Chapter 4: Process Manufacturing Sector Benchmarks

Chapter 4 provides benchmarks for process manufacturers. Process manufacturers are defined as those where the production process adds value by mixing, separating, forming, or creating a chemical reaction. The sector includes manufacturers of chemicals, petrochemicals, semiconductors, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, dietary supplements, food and beverage products, building materials, packaging materials, steel, glass, paper products, and other process-manufactured goods. The 40 respondents in the sample range in size from a minimum of about €50 million to a maximum €26 billion in annual revenue.

Chapter 5: Discrete Manufacturing Sector Benchmarks

Chapter 5 provides benchmarks for discrete manufacturing organizations. Discrete manufacturers are defined as those where the production process adds value by fabricating or assembling individual (discrete) unit production. The category includes manufacturers of consumer products, industrial equipment, telecommunications equipment, aerospace products, auto parts, electrical parts, medical devices, and electronic devices, among other products. The 20 respondents in this sample range in size from a minimum of €100 million to €85 billion in annual revenue.

Chapter 6: Retail Sector Benchmarks

Chapter 6 provides benchmarks for retailers. This sector includes retailers of clothing, hardware, furniture, sports equipment, groceries, pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements and health products, and general merchandise. They include department stores, furniture stores, pharmacies, sporting goods stores, and specialty retailers, both online and brick-and-mortar. We also include hospitality and consumer services in this sector. The 17 respondents in the sample range in size from €115 million to over €31 billion in annual revenue.  (36 pp., 21 fig.)

Chapter 7: Professional/Technical Services Sector Benchmarks

Chapter 7 provides benchmarks for professional and technical services organizations. The 20 respondents in the sample range in size from a minimum of about €93 million to about €85 billion in annual revenue. The sector includes firms that provide professional and technical services, including engineering, legal, accounting, financial advice, consulting, marketing, research, IT, and other services.

Chapter 8, Food and Beverage Subsector Benchmarks

Chapter 8 provides benchmarks for food and beverage manufacturers. The 14 respondents in the sample range in size from about €50 million to €26 billion in annual revenue. Food and beverage companies produce beverages, snack foods, meat products, seafood products, vegetables, dairy products, dietary supplements, pet food, and other consumable food products. Some are suppliers to other food manufacturers or to the food service industry, while many also distribute consumer products to retailers or directly to consumers.

IT Spending and Staffing Benchmarking Consulting

Computer Economics not only publishes benchmarking metrics. We are also the leading provider of IT spending and staffing benchmarking services.

Looking for expert assistance in evaluating your IT spending and staffing levels or budgeting for IT? Our custom benchmarking consulting service provides an in-depth assessment of your organization’s IT spend ratios, comparing your key metrics against our database of peer organizations.

Contact us for pricing and a free sample of the benchmarking deliverable.

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Akshay Khanna

Partner, Avasant
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Frank Scavo

President, Avasant Research