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IT industry: computer hardware

Research guide

Published: 26 Feb 2019 Updated: 15 Dec 2020 Update History

Exclusive content
Access to our exclusive resources is for specific groups of students, subscribers and members.

Use our industry guide to find key background information, market research, import and export guidelines, statistics, legislation, trade bodies and trade publications.

The Business & Industry Guides series is produced by the Library & Information Service for ICAEW members and ACA students.

We can compile tailored key players reports, mailing lists, market reports, benchmarking reports and industry news. Our enquiry team can also research other industry-specific information, such as taxation, for you. Call us on +44 (0)20 7920 8620 or email library@icaew.com.

Trends and forecasts

IT Industry Outlook 2023
Publication from technology association CompTIA providing insight into the trends shaping the IT industry, its workforce and business models.

Consumer IT - Market Trends
Articles on the the latest market trends published by Consumer IT, an eNewsletter aimed at Europe's PC retailers, distributors and builders.

The digital, technology and computer services sectors and the EU
Guidance from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy for the digital, technology and computer services sectors on working with the EU from 1 January 2021. Areas covered include employees, data, visiting Europe, services, movement of goods and EU funding.(updated Jan 2021)

Market research

Market research reports focusing on this business sector are available from a number of market research specialists. In most cases these reports are available to fee-paying subscribers or on a pay-as-you-go basis.

Some free information is available from the following market research specialists, ranging from industry news to executive summaries of the reports.

Euromonitor
A full listing of reference products and research reports for the computers and peripherals market from Euromonitor, with a range of global, country and company level reports. Each report provides a contents listing and a useful executive summary reporting on the key trends in each country report.

IBISWorld
Business and industry research specialists offering reports on a wide range of sectors. Topics include computer and peripheral manufacture, wholesale, retail and repair. Report snapshots, table of contents and a sample report are available. The company also produces global industry research reports.

Mintel
A full listing of reports covering the computing and IT industry with the option to view the executive summary and a table of contents for each report.

Industry news

The Library can carry out industry news searches for ICAEW members and ACA students.

Statistics on the UK

Office for National Statistics

The Annual Business Survey (ABS) from the Office for National Statistics collects financial information covering UK production, construction, distribution and service industries. Statistics available include:

  • number of enterprises;
  • total turnover;
  • approximate gross value added at basic prices;
  • total purchases of goods, materials and services;
  • total employment costs;
  • total net capital expenditure;
  • total net capital expenditure – acquisitions;
  • total net capital expenditure – disposals;
  • total stocks and work in progress – value at end of year;
  • total stocks and work in progress – value at beginning of year;
  • total stocks and work in progress – increase during year.

The dataset Non-financial business economy, UK: Sections A to S includes statistics for:

  • Manufacture of computers and peripheral equipment (26.2)
    See Section C: Manufacturing
  • Wholesale of computers, computer peripheral equipment and software (46.51)
    See Division 46: Wholesale trade, except of motor vehicles and motorcycles
  • Retail sale of computers, peripheral units and software in specialised stores (47.41)
    See Division 47: Retail trade, except of motor vehicles and motorcycles

Statistics on Europe

Eurostat

Eurostat, the EU statistics hub, collates detailed Structural Business Statistics giving the latest figures for industry, construction, trade and services by sector and country. The indicators available include:

  • number of enterprises
  • turnover or gross premiums written
  • production value
  • value added at factor cost
  • gross operating surplus
  • wages and salaries
  • social security costs
  • gross investment in tangible goods
  • gross investment in land
  • gross investment in existing buildings and structures
  • gross investment in construction and alteration of buildings
  • gross investment in machinery and equipment
  • number of employees
  • number of persons employed per enterprise.

Statistics within the database are available for:

  • Wholesale of computers, computer peripheral equipment and software (G4651)
    See database section ‘SBS – trade’
  • Retail sale of computers, peripheral units and software in specialised stores (G4741)
    See database section ‘SBS – trade’

Statistics on the Americas

CompTIA

Technology association CompTIA published a Tech Trade Snapshot in May 2018. It provides data for 2017 on US tech exports including computer equipment.

Global statistics

INDSTAT

The UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) collects and compiles industrial statistics known as INDSTAT, which give information on:

  • number of employees
  • number of establishments
  • output
  • value added
  • total wages and salaries.

Statistics by country are available for:

  • Office, accounting and computing machinery (3000)

UN Industrial Commodity Statistics Database

The UN provides statistics on the quantity of goods produced by country in the Industrial Commodity Statistics Database.

Figures are available for:

  • Computing machinery and parts and accessories thereof (45)
  • Laptop PCs and palm-top organizers (45)
  • Desktop PCs (45)
  • Digital data processing machines: presented in the form of systems (45)
  • Printers (45)
  • Keyboards (45)
  • Monitors (visual display units) (45)
  • Other input or output units(excluding printers, monitors and keyboards)(45)
  • Central storage units (45)
  • CD-ROM drives (45)
  • Hard disk drives (45)
  • Floppy disk drives (45)
  • Magnetic tape storage units (45)

Employment

UK

The Office for National Statistics publication Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings (ASHE) includes average employment costs within this sector which can be found in Table 14. Average employment costs are provided for full-time employees, part-time employees and all employees.

The data includes average employment costs for:

  • IT engineers

The annual Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES), published by the Office for National Statistics, includes total employee and employment estimates for different industries for Great Britain and the UK. Figures are broken down to show full-time/part-time and public/private splits. The dataset Industry – Business Register and Employment Survey (BRES): Table 2 includes statistics for:

  • Manufacture of computers and peripheral equipment (262)
  • Wholesale of computers, computer peripheral equipment and software (46510)
  • Retail sale of computers, peripheral units and software in specialised stores (47410)

Other regions

Please see individual country profile pages for links to sources of national statistics.

Import and export

Trade Tariff

The Trade Tariff is a useful Gov.uk database listing tax, duties and licenses for the import and export of goods between the UK and other countries. The database is searchable by product or commodity code and results can be filtered by date and country. Information also includes links to relevant conditions and regulations. 

UK business guides

Atom Content Marketing guides

The Start Up Donut from Atom Content Marketing provides practical information on starting up and running a number of small business types. Guides cover a range of areas including market research, current trends, regulations, products and services, promotion and pricing. They include:

UK key players, ratios and trends

A range of reports on this sector are available to ICAEW members and ACA students via the Library.

Valuation

Reports on this sector can be supplied by the Library to ICAEW members and ACA students.

UK benchmarking

The Library can supply benchmarking reports to ICAEW members and ACA students.

Trade bodies

Trade journals and publications

Trade journals, B2B magazines and specialist consumer magazines are another useful source of news and statistics.

Further reading

Articles and books in the Library collection

To find out how you can borrow books from the Library please see our guide to book loans.

You can obtain copies of articles or extracts of books and reports by post or email through our document supply service.

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Disclaimer

ICAEW accepts no responsibility for the content on any site to which a hypertext link from this site exists. The links are provided ‘as is’ with no warranty, express or implied, for the information provided within them. Please see the full copyright and disclaimer notice.

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