Business technology applications including “CRM, commerce servers, contact center systems, product lifecycle management and supply chain management will continue to see strong demand, led by CRM’s 18% growth in 2018 and 26% in 2019,” says the report, which was authored by Andrew Bartels, Forrester vice president and principal analyst serving chief information officers. The report also cites strength in spending on e-procurement applications, and advises companies to balance investments in back-office systems like inventory and financial management to provide accurate data and other support to technology for conducting commerce transactions with both suppliers and customers.

Although the report warns that the U.S. economy and technology spending could slow next year as a result of such things as rising interest rates and trade wars, it advises companies to push up their technology spending budgets by “at least 6%” this year to stay competitive with applications designed for “winning, serving and retaining customers.”