IT transformation is a growing trend across many industries, as legacy systems become inadequate for modern business conditions. IT transformation entails infrastructure and operational improvements such as system upgrades, or the adoption of new technologies. It aims to bring in long-term cost and efficiency benefits that also provide some form of risk protection.
Modernizing one’s IT infrastructure is an integral part of many enterprise resource planning (ERP) activities; it involves integrating various databases and streamlining of processes and information that may simply be not possible or inefficient with older information systems.
What are legacy systems?
Legacy systems are old information systems (computers, applications, technology, etc.) that are outdated yet still in use. The term “legacy” connotes that it paved the way for the standards that succeeded it, but in more common terms, it simply means that the system is out of date and in need of replacement.
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Many businesses continue to use legacy systems because of any of the following reasons: perceived difficulties in shifting to modern systems, perceived high costs, preference for “traditional” comfort over the unknown, outdated hardware that can’t run newer software, or lack of accurate information. For instance, some military sectors, such as the U.S. Navy, still used MS-DOS for its food service management system as of 2011.
What does it cost to stay outdated?
Outdated systems have many unwanted costs, some of them not immediately obvious. For instance, maintenance costs for legacy systems tend to exponentially increase, as customizations and changes add layer upon layer of complexity to the system over time. This makes troubleshooting and diagnostics less straightforward, leading to more downtime and maintenance costs.
Furthermore, older proprietary systems tend to be a hodge-podge contraption of applications from several different vendors, which raises issues of compatibility, support, and integration. It is not uncommon for cross-application conflicts to occur, even if they work on the same operating system. Some apps automatically uninstall older codecs or patches, and this can affect other applications that use the same codec or patch.
There is no question that outdated systems also bring in costs from other areas of business such as talent acquisition and compliance. Older proprietary systems often require specialized talent, and because these skills may be difficult to source through modern talent pipelines, businesses will have to resort to specialized training.
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Also, if user skills are already difficult to source, then support skills are also just as difficult to find. Lastly, businesses risk compliance issues by using dated information systems, especially since many data management regulations — such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) — are strictly enforced.
What’s a better option for my business?
Managed IT systems — such as those provided by WhiteOwl Tech — are designed to integrate, optimize, and deliver. Comprehensive ERP platforms help companies make better decisions, automate jobs, reduce operational costs, and scale up or down depending on your business’ needs.
WhiteOwl’s ERP solution comes in the form of cloud-based, on-premise, or hybrid deployment models, so you can pick one which best suits your requirements. It is a big improvement from a legacy system because it integrates well with other WhiteOwl services you may need, such as Microsoft Dynamics365 or CRM solutions. It also eliminates unnecessary costs; you can avail of the service on a flat, subscription-based monthly fee. Now that’s more power for your money!
To go WhiteOwl is to go topnotch — we provide agile, powerful, and scalable solutions using industry best practices, to assist the ever-evolving business IT needs of a dynamic SMB landscape. Got problems? We have solutions. Schedule your FREE CONSULTATION today!