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Downturn Looms, but Digital Spending Booms

Despite widespread recession forecasts, digital spending is likely to prove resilient in 2023, reports The New York Times (subscription).

What’s going on: “In a recent poll of corporate technology managers in the United States by the research firm IDC, 82 percent said they expected a recession this year. But 62 percent replied that technology spending at their companies would be the same or increase compared with 2022.”

For example . . . Heating and cooling equipment manufacturer Johnson Controls is expanding its number of digital projects.

  • “Last year, the company added 500 software engineers and other technical staff to its team of 2,500 software engineers. It plans to hire 350 more tech workers.”
  • “‘We have to continue to invest,’ said Vijay Sankaran, chief technology officer of Johnson Controls. ‘You can’t do what we’re trying to do without technology.’”

“Recession-proof”: Business investment in software is so robust that chief forecasters at analyst firms Gartner and IDC recently called it “recession-proof” and “more resilient than it’s ever been,” respectively, according to the Times.

  • “In recent years, new technologies like cloud computing, data analytics, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity software have become increasingly mainstream. Companies now see them as vital tools for conducting business.”

Digital leadership: Johnson Controls is a past winner of the Manufacturing Leadership Council’s Manufacturing Leadership Award (the MLC is the digital transformation arm of the NAM). If you’re interested in learning more about how manufacturers prepare for digital transformation over the short and long term, visit

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