COVID-19 will have long lasting impact on Future of Work, Technology M&A and Cloud, according to 451 Research's 2021 industry outlook reports

NEW YORK, Dec. 17, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- 451 Research, a part of S&P Global Market Intelligence, shares the 2021 outlook on key segments within the industry, highlighting lasting impact of COVID-19. The pandemic is moving digital technology strategy into an even more central position for many organizations, often pulling forward years of transformation into mere months, driving higher rates of cloud adoption and triggering substantial technology merger and acquisition activity (M&A). Organizations are rethinking their workplace designs, with information technology at the center, and cybersecurity strategies are being redesigned to account for the new reality of work from home. Acquired by S&P Global Market Intelligence one year ago this month, 451 Research is the division's information and emerging technology research group.

"This has been an unprecedented year in many respects, and the enterprise IT market is no exception. The COVID-19 pandemic has challenged almost all organizations, but it has also acted as a catalyst for significant digital transformation. Given these changes, the acquisition and integration of 451 Research in S&P Global Market Intelligence could not have been better timed. 451 Research's extensive analysis and survey work created a broad array of insights to benefit both 451 Research and S&P Global Market Intelligence clients. Technology plays a transformational role in most companies and we are excited to bring these rich insights to our broader audience," said Brett Azuma, Head of Research at S&P Global Market Intelligence.

451 Research unveils today 2021 industry outlook analyses on various key themes that will continue to generate significant transformation in information technology:

  • Future of Work & Workplace Collaboration: COVID-19 pandemic has had a strong impact on physical work spaces, work processes and employment models. This catalyzed a demand for more efficient ways of measuring and managing productivity that will lead to stronger investments in interactive team communication and collaboration tools to support that productivity.
  • Technology M&A: In 2020, acquirers more than made up for the time lost during the shut-down, spending billions on large bets in key markets such as enterprise software and semiconductors. Given the newsworthy deals (such as Salesforce buying Slack, and NVIDIA's proposal to acquire ARM) announced in the second-half of 2020, the momentum seems likely to roll on into 2021, particularly if the broader economy returns to health.
  • Cloud: COVID-19's unpredictability and the cloud's ability to scale without reservation has made cloud invaluable for many enterprises. This will continue in 2021 as enterprises rewrite their business models to be more online and agile. Longer term, enterprises will double-down on cloud as they rebuild and accelerate their digital transformations.
  • Cybersecurity: The wholesale shift to remote work is forcing a re-think of cybersecurity architecture, with increased emphasis on secure access, extending protections across network terrain, and telemetry from many new sources. The popularity of 'smart' devices, Internet of Things (IoT) and operational technologies, along with incidents arising from extensive reliance on a host of third party IT providers will heighten emphasis on cybersecurity's alignment with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives while collaboration between security and application development will reach new heights due to increased breaches arising from application vulnerabilities.

451 Research's 2021 outlook reports will be available in January 2021. To request a copy, please contact

For a dynamic review of 451 Research's 2020 trends recap, please check out this infographic here.

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