Technology is going to have to deliver innovation and greater efficiency in the future if it wants to secure sales as users come out of the recession with budgets down.
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According to Steve Ballmer, Microsoft's CEO, budgets across customers are generally down by 10% and the pressure to deliver innovation twinned with efficiency is not going to ease.
"Consumers want technology to be powerful and easy to use and business owners want it to be more capable and more efficient," Steve Ballmer added. "Efficiency and cost are more on people's minds than I can ever remember, even in the doct.com-bust era."
In an e-mail that Ballmer sent out last week, he outlined what he called "the new normal". In his speech to customers today, entitled "the new efficiency", he said consumers would demand technology "that ran the IT factory well".
Martin Saunders, marketing director at managed services specialist clara.net, said the situation in the market was improving, but customers wanted SLAs and more support with the day-to-day running of their IT departments.
"We did see a dip in spending, with projects being out on hold, but the projects are coming back. They were never cancelled, just put on hold," Saunders said.