New research from industry analyst Inform reveals channel executives continue to rely on publications written specifically to address their needs, while Web-based information will become even more important between now and 2001.
Inform released the latest results from its Channel Trends 99 Australia and New Zealand research this week, and found one of the biggest challenges for channel executives continues to be "keeping up to date with technology".
Hard-copy IT magazines came out as the most important source of information for the channel, with 71.5 per cent of respondents rating them as either of "high importance" or "very high importance".
Australian Reseller News was regarded as the most received and well-read publication for channel executives in Australia. Inform found that 89 per cent of all Australian-based respondents either receive or subscribe to ARN.
Furthermore, 79 per cent of respondents read it regularly (at least every other issue).
The report also states 77 per cent of the respondents said they found the publication to be either "informative/useful" or "very informative/ useful".
ARN was followed by DWR's Computer Reseller News Australia, with 45 per cent of respondents stating they received CRNA and 38 per cent reporting they read it regularly.
The IT sections of state-based newspapers (for example, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age) came third in the most received or subscribed to publications category, followed by The Australian (Tuesday's IT section) and The Financial Review (IT section).
However, the report contained a challenge for all IT publishers: vendor and distributor Web sites are currently rated as the second most important source of information for channel executives.
The survey produced 226 valid respondents from Australia and a further 319 from New Zealand. All were of senior management or middle management status.
The largest proportion (26 per cent) of respondents were from reseller organisations, followed by IT service providers and software developers who made up 20 and 19 per cent of the respondent base, respectively.
Retailers represented 15 per cent, while VARs were 7 per cent and "Other" was 1 per cent.
Inform said a summary of the findings will be mailed to all respondents during the next two weeks.