IT service companies and ICT in France: market status – September 2023
Thursday, September 14th, 2023, the “Grand Angle” study, conducted by the partners, KPMG France and Numeum, was revealed during the “Rendez-vous ESN France et ICT”, a yearly French event gathering IT service companies and consulting firms.
Growth strategy for IT service companies and ICT in France
Despite an uncertain global situation, the digital ecosystem is barely affected by crisis.
The sector shows a great growth that is mainly driven on a strategy focused on:
- Developing very high-value added and innovating offers (for 80% of survey respondents),
- Implementing recruitment plans (74%)
- Positioning themselves in leading sectors (62%) such as the financial, energy and industry sectors.
And the actors are optimistic! 98% of businesses are confident or even very confident in their goals of 3-year growth; that is 3% more compared to 2022’s market study.
IT service companies and ICT in France: CSR initiatives
IT service companies and ICT are increasing their engagement towards a more sustainable ecosystem, being aware of their role in reducing the digital environmental impact. And they give themselves the means to do so:
• Bringing ESG functions under executive management for 63% of digital actors; a proof of their will to implement an impacting CSR approach ;
• Defining a corporate purpose for 61% of actors, (7% more compared to the last survey), and even registering this purpose on their status for 37% of them (+18%) ;
• Integrating CSR/ESG performance in leaders’ remuneration criteria for 20% of IT service companies and ICT.
To express their goal of reducing carbon footprint, 78% of actors are equipped with measuring and management tools for their actions (+16% compared to 2022)
In the face of societal challenges, engagement is still remarkable with a great ambition for green tech, job creation, parity and wage equality, as well as getting access to new skills.
The profits of such an approach go beyond challenges as they are considered as a federating project, valuing attracting talents and talent loyalty while improving the reputation of IT service companies and consulting firms.
The survey reveals inspiring trends focused on 3 major approaches: recruitment, employee loyalty and training.
Recruitment goals of IT service companies in France are ambitious, keeping up with the challenges of digital transformation in the French economy. The uncertainty concerning the capacity to reach recruitment goals in 3 years is nonetheless more important than 12 months ago, with +8% of actors not feeling very confident or feeling that they don’t have any visibility on the future.
So how do we achieve these goals? We notice two trends:
• Going back to field-based actions that encourages proximity with young graduates: participating in events like career fairs, trade fairs, having more school partnerships etc.
• Hiring freelancers in IT service companies and ICT, which has increased by almost 2% in 2022.
The first criteria for employee loyalty is still remuneration with a 4% increase on the average granted wages in 2022. The second one is training, by offering great and fulfilling development perspectives. Remote work comes right after, keeping up with the new expectations of employees.
We’d also like to underline that a huge investment was made in 2022. French IT service companies and ICT anticipate a training budget brought up to 3.4% of the wage bill, particularly for training on technical topics. The Cloud is the most sought-after skill with a +9% increase compared to our last survey.
Innovation within French IT service companies
Innovation is more than ever in the center of all strategies for IT service companies and consulting firms. They devote, on average, 7% of their turnover and 13% of their workforce in full-time equivalent.
Not only this significant effort deeply establishes an innovation culture, but it is also a source of success. Therefore, 31% of innovative projects are materialized by their launch, giving testimony of the capacity of digital actors to transform ideas into tangible realities.
Primary technological sectors show the race for technological excellence, engaged by IT service companies, with technologies such as the Cloud, Artificial Intelligence, generative A.I. and Cyber-security.
These areas of expertise shape the future of the ecosystem, proving that innovation is anchored in their DNA. Aware that partnerships encourages progress, half of IT service companies call upon external actors to carry out their projects. This successful collaboration stimulates the exchange of ideas and encourages the creation of breakthrough solutions.
This panorama was established from data collected, by Numeum and KPMG during the second quarter of 2023, from a representative selection of almost 150 IT service companies and consulting firms of all sizes, located in France, based on a survey available online covering the following subjects: growth strategy, talent management, Environmental, social, and corporate governance initiatives (ESG criteria), and innovation.