Rise in Business Technologists Drives Funding for Tech Purchases Outside of IT


Tech Buying Experiences to Be Discussed at Gartner Tech Growth & Innovation Conference, July 12-13, 2022

Seventy-four percent of technology purchases are funded, at least partially, by business units (BUs) outside of IT, according to a recent Gartner survey. Only 26% of technology investments are funded entirely by the IT organization.                           

In November and December 2021, Gartner surveyed 1,120 manager-level or higher respondents in organizations with at least $1 million in annual revenue in North America, Western Europe, and Asia/Pacific to understand how organizations approach large-scale buying efforts for enterprise technology.

“As technology becomes more critical to and embedded across the business, buying team dynamics continue to evolve. In the past, it was relatively easy to predict who buyers were, but all that has changed,” said Derry N. Finkeldey, research vice-president at Gartner.

“Gartner research found that 41% of employees are business technologists, creating technology or analytics capabilities for internal or external business use and reporting outside of IT departments. In a world where most technologists work outside the corporate IT department, anyone could be a technology buyer for their organization.”

The survey found that across large purchases in every major technology category, organizations take varying approaches to funding:

  • The most common funding approach for hardware, technology services, and managed services is for IT to fund the entire purchase, followed by funding coming from multiple departments or BUs and IT.
  • The most common funding model for software and integrated solutions flips these two: Funding by multiple departments and IT is most common, followed by IT-only funding.
  • IT is providing at least part of the funding in 70% of the purchases studied.
  • Seventy-five percent of respondents using shared funding approaches experienced delays in reaching an agreement on the budget allocation between groups.

“High-tech providers need new approaches to identify not only whom to engage but also how to engage B2B buyers across all BUs, with confidence that their approaches will be effective and their roadmaps compelling. Product leaders need to coach teams tasked with discovering budget availability to extend that research to also include the funding approach,” said Finkeldey.

Even as the role of business technologists grows, product leaders should not bypass central IT representatives even when addressing an industry- or line-of-business-specific use case with an identified business champion, because in nearly every case, IT will continue to provide at least partial funding.

Gartner clients can learn more in “Anticipate Delays and Consensus Challenges When Funding is Distributed” and in the on-demand webinar The B2B Buying Myths That Are Costing You Business.

Learn about the top priorities for technology product managers in the complimentary ebook 2022 Leadership Vision for Technology Product Managers.

Gartner Tech Growth & Innovation Conference

Gartner analysts will provide additional analysis on tech buying behavior at the Gartner Tech Growth & Innovation Conference 2022, taking place virtually July 12-13 in the Americas. Follow news and updates from the conference on Twitter using #GartnerTGI.


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