Many companies are often reluctant to modernize outdated legacy systems fearing data loss, service breakdowns and cost overruns. Not modernizing, however, can often prove costlier and more detrimental to a business than the alternative. New research shows that up to 70% of IT budget are spent just on maintaining legacy systems. When done properly legacy modernization projects can be done quickly and inexpensively. Just follow these simple guidelines.
Grab the Opportunity
First realize that legacy modernization isn’t a chore – it's an opportunity for companies to reassess needs and goals and optimize operations. If done correctly legacy modernization can provide a quick return on investment and even save companies time and money by streamlining outdated procedures.
Avoid Technological Myopia
Your ultimate goal is to enhance the organization's services, not show off technical expertise. Before embarking on a project make sure you have a firm grasp of the company's goals and keep your mission business-centric, not IT centric. Always remember that technology is there to serve the company and not the other way around.
Take One Step at a Time
Many modernization projects try and bite off more than they can chew and accomplish everything in one go. This is a quick recipe for disaster. The longest treks begin with one small step. The best way to modernize a legacy system is incrementally using a migration strategy to ensure the system remains functional during renovations. You may even be required to utilize overlapping functionality and data duplication to bridge legacy and new systems during the interim phase.
Keep Expectations Realistic
It's easy to get carried away during the sales process and make big promises regarding current needs, future needs and even potential needs. But when the time comes to pay the piper, you can easily get into trouble. Keep goals realistic and your delivery staff in the loop during the sales cycle. Transparency with the client will always be appreciated and is critical to success.
The best solutions are often multi-flavored, not one size fits all. Certain legacy applications can be wrapped. Some may simply be re-hosted by running them on different platforms with no major changes. Still others will have to be converted. By being flexible and providing a range of solutions, you will simplify your task.