Boston, Mass. (Dec. 4, 2003) -- An increase in information technology buying by businesses with at least 1,000 employees may be right around the corner, according to technology industry analysts AMR Research.

IT budgets in the third quarter of 2003 grew 4.3 percent, compared to 3.4 percent growth in the same period in 2002. "The momentum is continuing to build in IT spending for 2004 and beyond," Boston-based AMR said in its report, based on interviews with executives at 200 manufacturing and service companies with 1,000-plus employees.

"Customer service will be the central focus of 2004, with 38 percent of respondents claiming that customer-driven issues like loyalty and retention will have the greatest influence on IT investments," AMR said.

AMR expects companies to give top spending priority to networking/telecommunications systems that provide connectivity to customers.

-- WebCPA staff

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