The business software market has been expanding dramatically during the past few years and will continue to do so in the future, driven by several emerging trends. Cloud computing and Software-as-a-Service, in particular, are some of the driving forces behind the growing market, helping to generate more than $384 billion in revenue by 2015, according to a report by Global Industry Analysts.

SaaS is so appealing because of the technology's ability to customize an organization's infrastructure while giving officials the ability to take advantage of a pay-as-you-go pricing model. As a result, cloud computing and SaaS will reshape the entire IT marketplace, the report said.

Another benefit of SaaS solutions is the fact that they are designed around an open-web concept, GIA noted. As such, they are easily integrated with existing applications, such as online or phone services, to help reduce the costs and complexities traditionally associated with expanding IT infrastructures.

According to Gartner Research, SaaS is one of the largest and fastest-growing segments of the cloud computing market, as it is expected to account for more than $21 billion in revenue by 2015. By utilizing cloud-based technologies, businesses can be more prepared for changes in the evolving IT industry.

However, the cloud isn't the only thing that is causing the market to expand. Network software will also help the industry grow, as the internet remains a necessary aspect for B2B and B2C transactions, GIA noted.

Mobile networks, in particular, are poised for serious growth as more gadgets are used to connect to the internet, in and outside of businesses. This is especially true as organizations deploy bring-your-own-device policies, allowing individuals to utilize personal devices in the office.

A recent Avanade study of more than 600 IT professionals from around the world found that 88 percent of survey respondents currently allow their employees to use their own computing devices at work. While many believe this will appeal to younger generations, that isn't necessarily the case. Instead, BYOD programs are implemented primarily to drive portability.

By using mobile networks and applications, employees can use their company's phone, messaging and fax services anywhere in the world. This helps employees become more efficient and allows organizations to save money by reducing the need for premise-based systems, Avanade noted.

"For business leaders, the consumerization of IT has less to do with the worker and more to do with the way employees work," Avanade global chief technology officer Tyson Hartman said. "Our research shows that productivity and anywhere access are rated significantly higher by executives over improved employee morale or providing greater responsibilities to younger employees."

As more companies utilize alternative services like mobile and cloud-based solutions, the need to secure these environments also grows. As a result, the security software market is also helping drive the overall software industry, according to Global Industry Analysts.

Mobile, cloud and network security software that help guard against phishing, malware and breaches are therefore poised for steady growth in the coming years. Identity and access management, intrusion detection and prevention, as well as other management solutions will be major contributors, Global Industry Analysts reported.

According to an Ovum study, the global security software market will generate more than $23 billion in revenue by 2015, expanding at a compound annual growth rate of nearly 7 percent beginning in 2010.

All of these contributors will help the overall software industry expand and evolve, allowing organizations to utilize the most up-to-date and efficient solutions to keep them competitive.

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