Data Management Eating up IT Budgets


Structured database and data management workloads continued to drive the largest share of enterprise IT infrastructure spending in the second half of 2023, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Enterprise Infrastructure Tracker: Workloads.

The tracker reveals that organizations spent $7.2 billion on compute and storage hardware infrastructure to support this workload in the second half of last year – or 7.8 percent of overall enterprise IT infrastructure spending.

Yet despite the high amount of spending, the tracker shows that structured database and data management workloads also declined in the second half of the year, falling 1.3 percent compared to the same period in 2022.

What was the workload with the fastest spending growth in the second half of 2023? That category was led by industry-specific business applications, which saw a year-over-year increase of 36.6 percent.

“Spending on AI Lifecycle workloads accelerated during the second half of 2023, growing 26.6 percent compared to [the second half of 2022] and representing 7.2 percent of overall spending,” according to an IDC press release. “This made AI Lifecycle the second largest workload with spending totaling $6.6 billion.”

The press release also explains that “workload spending profiles vary across product categories.”

For example, AI lifecycle was the leading workload for OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) servers with $3.9 billion and a 7.6 percent share. On the other hand, structured database and data management workloads led OEM storage, which represented 16.6 percent of the spending with a $2.4 billion value.

“As enterprise workloads continue to move into cloud environments, investments in shared infrastructure (a hardware base for delivering public cloud services) and in dedicated infrastructure across all workloads are expected to grow at a double-digit pace over the next five years,” the release says.

Specifically, over the next five years, IDC expects growth in compute and storage systems for cloud-native workloads will grow faster than infrastructure supporting traditional workloads – 14 percent versus 8.4 percent CAGR (compound annual growth rate).

However, IDC said it expects traditional workloads will continue to account for most of the spending during the forecast period – 67 percent in 2028.

This tracker is a part of IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Infrastructure Tracker, which provides a holistic view of the four key enabling infrastructure technologies for the data center.