Back to top

Image: Shutterstock

3 Stocks to Watch From the Prospering Computer-Services Industry

Read MoreHide Full Article

The Zacks Computer - Services industry is riding on the ongoing digital transformation, which is driving the demand for cloud-enabled software solutions. The rising adoption of digital transformative techniques in healthcare and financial services remains the silver lining for the industry participants. CGI Group (GIB - Free Report) , Perficient (PRFT - Free Report) and Forrester Research (FORR - Free Report) are well-positioned to benefit from the above-mentioned positives. The growing need for consulting, research and cyber-security solutions; stringent regulatory requirements; digital healthcare; and the requirement for business automation solutions should continue to drive the industry. However, the industry has been facing macro-economic challenges. Elongated sales cycle, lower conversion rates and delays by customers in making purchase decisions  are notable headwinds.

Industry Description

The Zacks Computer - Services industry primarily comprises companies that offer cloud and software-based solutions. Their offerings include consulting and research solutions, security solutions, business support solutions, and systems engineering, as well as software application development solutions. The industry participants cater to varied end markets and customers, including intelligence, defense, U.S. government agencies, communications, banking, financial services, insurance, healthcare, and media and entertainment. Consultancy companies in the industry are helping clients in their ongoing digital transformation. They are providing end-to-end services, including application development, integration and maintenance; technology infrastructure management; and business process services.


3 Computer-Services Industry Trends to Watch

Remote & Hybrid Work Trends Boost Prospects: The industry’s growth is expected to accelerate in the days ahead based on an increasing number of remote and hybrid workers. In this era of digital transformation, enterprises are actively seeking a common ground between on-premise and cloud infrastructures, enabling them to provide flexible, as well as easily adaptable hybrid solutions. The coronavirus-induced remote-working trend has led to increased demand for cloud and cost-efficient business support solutions, as well as other digital monetization solutions, which bode well for the industry.

Growing Cyber Attacks is a Tailwind: Increasing number of cyber-attacks and related security risks are expected to keep the industry’s momentum alive. Government agencies are ideal targets for cyber-attacks, as they are entrusted with sensitive information. Therefore, the growing need for cyber security solutions and services in critical areas like defense, intelligence and civilian agencies of the U.S. government bodes well for the industry players.

Regulatory Compliance Drives Demand: The companies in this industry should benefit from increasingly complex network systems, and sensitive information environments in which governments, as well as businesses, operate. The industry participants are keeping pace with the global regulatory and business practice requirements, thereby helping customers incorporate the best practices, while complying with governmental and industry norms.

Zacks Industry Rank Indicates Solid Prospects

The Zacks Computer – Services industry is housed within the broader Zacks Computer and Technology sector. It carries a Zacks Industry Rank #64, which places it in the top 26% of more than 250 Zacks industries.

The group’s Zacks Industry Rank, which is basically the average of the Zacks Rank of all the member stocks, indicates bullish near-term prospects. Our research shows that the top 50% of the Zacks-ranked industries outperforms the bottom 50% by a factor of more than two to one.

Before we present a few stocks that you may want to consider for your portfolio, let’s take a look at the industry’s recent stock-market performance and valuation picture.

Industry Beats Sector & S&P 500

The Zacks Computer – Services industry has outperformed the broader Zacks Computer and Technology sector as well as the S&P 500 Index over the past year.

The industry has lost 14.3% over this period compared with the S&P 500’s fall of 20.6% and the broader sector’s decline of 34.7%.

One-Year Price Performance

Industry's Current Valuation

On the basis of forward 12-month P/E, which is a commonly used multiple for valuing computer stocks, we see that the industry is currently trading at 10.88X compared with the S&P 500’s 16.65X and sector’s forward-12-month P/E of 19.42X.

Over the last five years, the industry has traded as high as 19.36X, as low as 10.12X and at the median of 15.98X, as the charts below show.

Forward 12-Month Price-to-Earnings (P/E) Ratio


3 Computer-Services Stocks to Watch Right Now

Forrester - This Cambridge, MA-based research and advisory provider is riding on strong growth in contract value (up in the double-digits in second-quarter 2022) and a solid client retention rate. This Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) company is benefiting from strong demand for its research product. Forrester Decisions has also gained significant traction within a short period. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for FORR’s 2022 earnings has been unchanged at $2.31 per share over the past 30 days. The stock has lost 30.3% year to date.

Price and Consensus: FORR


CGI Group: This Canada-based information technology and business consulting services provider is benefiting from an expanding clientele and accretive acquisitions.

This Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) company delivers a full range of services, including business consulting, strategic IT and systems integration, managed IT and business process services, and intellectual property to help clients accelerate digitization.

The Zacks Consensus Estimate for CGI Group’s fiscal 2022 earnings has declined 1.9% to $4.62 per share over the past 30 days. The stock has lost 9.1% year to date.

Price and Consensus: GIB



Perficient – This Zacks Rank #3 company is riding on an expanding customer base. Strong demand for Perficient’s global delivery model (40% of delivery resources are offshore) has been a key catalyst. In second-quarter 2022, Perficient booked 45 deals worth more than $1 million compared with 28 deals in the year-ago quarter.

The consensus mark for Perficient’s 2022 earnings has been unchanged at $4.30 per share over the past 30 days. The stock has lost 46.5% year to date.

Price and Consensus: PRFT


See More Zacks Research for These Tickers

Normally $25 each - click below to receive one report FREE:

Forrester Research, Inc. (FORR) - free report >>

CGI Group, Inc. (GIB) - free report >>

Perficient, Inc. (PRFT) - free report >>

Published in