Is your IT budget lagging behind competitors’?

The recession caused a rare drop in IT budgets, but things are returning to normal for most companies.

Overall, tech budgets are expected to rise by 2.8% in 2011, according to a recent TechTarget survey of 2,300 IT managers around the globe.

For 42% of IT departments, that means their budgets are returning to pre-recession levels, while 43% said they’re “slowly recovering” from the recession, and 15% are still stuck in it.

Where do IT managers expect to allocate their more healthy budgets this year? According to the survey, the top 10 spending areas are:

  1. Server virtualization (56% of respondents will spend in this area)
  2. Windows 7 upgrades (55%)
  3. Network-based security (51%)
  4. Data protection (46%)
  5. Disaster recovery and business continuity (45%)
  6. Custom application development (41%)
  7. Business intelligence/analytics/data warehousing (41%)
  8. Wireless networks (41%)
  9. Data center consolidation (37%), and
  10. Backup for virtual servers (34%).

Server virtualization gets the top priority, possibly because businesses are finding that virtualizing and consolidating servers is a good way to cut hardware and maintenance costs and free up even more space in the budget.

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