How will a recession affect IT?

They're not saying there will be a recession, nor, even if there is, that it will affect IT, but Forrester is cautioning CIOs to think proactively in terms of cost-cutting measures.

At a January 31 teleconference, Forrester told CIOs that they should be prepared to help their organizations ride through economic downturns.

Andrew Bartels, Forrester's vice president and principle analyst, said that headcount reductions are neither anticipated, nor recommended. He even said, "The worst thing you can do is get so focused on cuts that when you get out of the recession, you don't have what you need to move the business forward."

But he cautions that certain IT roles may be at greater risk in an economic downturn: contracted employees and "those in more commoditized areas like help desk or application support are at greater risk."

The experts don't see companies looking to offshore outsourcing as a panacea either, as they may have in the past, since many companies have been burned by those relationships.